The monsoon season brings with it wet and humid weather, creating the perfect environment for bloodsuckers and other creepy crawlies to thrive.
In Thailand, a young girl experienced an unwanted visitor in the form of a leech, which inadvertently crawled into her vagina and feasted on the blood there.
The parasite was only discovered after it had its fill of her blood and fell off on its own.
Her disturbed aunt, Napaporn Thanawong, took to Facebook on July 27, warning other parents to keep a closer eye on their children during the rainy season when such insects are out in full force.
The post was accompanied by two disturbing photos — one of a bloodied diaper the child had worn and another presumably of the leech. Thanawong did not disclose the age of her niece.
It remains unknown how the parasite ended up in the girl's body as she always has her pants on and seldom ventures out of her home, China Press reported.
The child also did not show any signs of being ill; she only cried when the leech fell out, and was taken to see a doctor thereafter.
While the doctor revealed that the leech was not poisonous, it took a while for the bleeding to stop. Thanawong added that her niece would still need to undergo further tests to see if there are other adverse effects.
Vaginal bleeding in children due to leech: Not an isolated case
This incident is not the only recent one happening in Thailand. A five-year-old girl also reportedly experienced a similar incident.
In addition to itching for a few days, the girl had told her mother that it felt like her genitals were being bitten by ants. They also noticed a foul odour being emitted.
After spotting blood on her underwear, the child's worried parents rushed her to a hospital where a doctor discovered the insect in her vagina.
The doctor advised parents to supervise where their children go off to play, and to seek medical attention if they come across any anomalies.
For the kids' safety, parents should also pay attention to clothing that have been hung out to dry which may trap such insects.
A 2003 research paper published by the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology in Bangkok's Chulalongkorn University found that vaginal bleeding caused by leeches is a problem unique to Thailand and other tropical countries.
The study found ten children aged between five and ten who've had similar experiences after swimming in a river or pond.
In one case, the bleeding was so severe that the child needed a blood transfusion.
This article was republished with permission from AsiaOne.