Doctors in Peru have used basil to help remove a worm from a teenager's eye that had been in there for around a month. The 17-year-old arrived at the National Children's Hospital in Lima, with a very swollen left eye. Medics quickly discovered that a three-centimetre (one inch) worm was responsible for the swelling after living in his eye for weeks.
They made the discovery after taking an MRI scan of the young man, who has not been named.
Ophthalmologist Caroline Marchena said the worm posed a serious risk to the boy's health because of swelling near a sensitive part of the face from which infections can spread to the brain.
She said: "The location of the worm from the lower lid, which was getting bigger, made the risks increase because the youth's tissue was swelling in an area close to the sinuses that's close to the delicate part which is the triangle of death (danger triangle of the face)."
Basil, a common culinary herb, was used as a way of attracting the worm out due to its smell.
Once the hungry worm had poked its head out in search of the basil, doctors used tweezers to pull it out in its entirety.
The worm did not cause any long-term damage to the teenager.