In August 2015, the parents of 12-year-old Shreya Darji from Gujarat, India, took her to the local hospital complaining about irritation in the little girl’s ear. Using an endoscopic camera to peer deep inside her ear canal, doctors were baffled by what they discovered. Inside Darji’s ear, they found and removed dozens of giant ants nesting in her ear canal. Today, Darji’s parents say she still has between ten to fifteen ants crawl out of her ear each day while doctors search for the cause – and a cure.
A year later, doctors continue to remove ants from Darji’s ear canal on a daily basis but say the problem persists and the ants continue to breed inside the little girl’s head. Dr. Jawahar Talsania, senior Ear, Nose, and Throat (ENT) surgeon told reporters:
“We have conducted all possible scans on the child including an MRI and CT scan, but they are all normal. We cannot find any abnormality in her ears.”
Doctors say the girl feels no pain from the infestation and she has no permanent damage to her ears. Furthermore, they found nothing in Darji’s home that can explain where the ants came from.
“The family live a normal life and they have a healthy environment so we can’t even blame their living conditions. We’ve not seen anything like this in our medical history.”
Doctors have tried freezing the ants, removing them one-by-one, even suffocating them with drops, all to no avail – the ants continue to propagate inside the girl’s ear. Darji’s doctor told reporters:
“We don’t believe the ants are laying eggs inside the ear as we’ve not spotted a queen ant inside. We are completely perplexed.”
Darji’s parents say they are terrified the condition is getting worse, not better. Her father told Times of India,
“She would sit in school and ants would crawl out of her ear. I have done everything I can. I have taken her to the best doctors, but they have failed to solve the problem. I’m worried about her future and how this will affect her studies.”
Doctors currently have Darji under video observation in an attempt to determine where the ants are coming from.