Woman With Eye Worms Found Only In Cattle: Proof Earth Sucks

Abby Beckley

Woman Finds Worms In Eyes

Abby Beckley assumed she had a stray eyelash in her eye. Instead, she pulled out a worm. But, how did Beckley get worms in her eyes? Can you get worms in your eyes?

Now that my Google search history now includes "How to prevent worms from getting in your eyes," I'm here to share this information with you because I am a professional who can put aside her intense phobia of eyes aside for journalistic integrity.

Right after this…

(Horrified screaming: "WOMAN EYE WORMS" stuck in my head forever.)

Okay. Let's continue.

1 of 4

Abby Beckley Finds Worms In Her Eye

In the summer of 2016, 28-year-old Abby Beckley, an Oregon resident, was working on a salmon-fishing boat in Alaska. It was then she felt that her eyes were scratchy… irritated.

She dealt with this for a week, thinking it was an eyelash, before looking into the mirror to find out what it was.

Then, she pulled out a half-inch long translucent worm — still wriggling — and there was more.

2 of 4

Can You Get Worms In Your Eyes?


Up until this point, this type of worm certainly wouldn't have been found in a human eye. Cattle? Yes, of course. If your brave, go ahead and search on Google image cattle who have had this parasite and tell me God exists.

Beckley went to an urgent care, where an eye doctor couldn't figure out what was wrong.

But they did remove four worms from her left eye.


3 of 4

Beckley returned home to Oregon and met with doctors at Oregon Health and Science University's Emergency Department.

She could feel the worms moving around. She remembers telling a doctor to "You have to look right now!" as one wiggled its way across her eye — the doctors were stunned. Personally? I would faint.

The doctors called an infectious-disease hotline, which is not what Drake was talking about when he sang "Hotline Bling."

The doctors on the call were confused. Erin Bonura, an assistant professor at the OHSU School of Medicine heard doctors say:

"This patient has worms coming out of her eye. What are we going to do?"

My knees feel weak typing this, but apparently Beckley could pull the worms out of her eyes better than the doctors, so she removed them herself for the next few weeks. OHSU sent the samples to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

She was told they would stay on the surface of her eye and not, you know, tunnel into her brain.

4 of 4
Rupaul's Drag Race / LogoTV and VH1

How To Prevent Worms From Getting Into Your Eyes

A species of eye-worm infections known as Thelazia californiensis is not unheard of in humans in the US.

However, Beckley had a different species: Thelazia gulosa. This species typically infects cattle. Flies that carry the worms land on the cow to eat the cow's tears, and the infection is spread.

Doctors think Beckley was infected by a fly landing on her eye while riding horses or fishing in Oregon, nearby cattle farms.

Beckley's eye yielded 14 worms. She pulled the last one on August 30, 2016.

Lucky for us, unlike other animals, people can remove eye-worms, so there is rarely serious damage. Antiparasitic medicines also help.