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Help!!!! I'm hospitalized and doctors think it's from taxidermy!

Discussion in 'Bird Taxidermy' started by dstreet, Feb 5, 2014.

  1. dstreet

    dstreet New Member

    I started getting headaches and body aches last Tuesday in Mexico. I took Advil and that helped w the pain. We returned home Thursday and I was ok until Saturday night when the headache returned and Advil didn't help. It got worse and worse. Sunday night I was up all night with this severe headache and body aches. Monday morning my primary care dr sent me to the ER and I was admitted. By that time I was vommitting a lot and the severe headache could only be eased w narcotics. I've had blood work, X-rays, CAT scan, MRI, lumbar puncture and due for abdominal studies tomorrow morning. My symptoms don't add up to anything common. They don't necessarily think it's from Mexico because of the timing of the symptoms and are questioning my close contact with the ducks that I've been mounting in the past few weeks. The doctors asked me to post something on here to see if anyone has experienced (or heard of) health problems or diseases related to ducks and taxidermy. I've haven't eaten for 3 days, the pain is getting worse, and I'm waiting for so many test results. Any info you could provide would be helpful and appreciated.
  2. joeym

    joeym Old Murphey

    Hope your problem can be diagnosed soon. My first thought is West Nile virus. It is usually developed from mosquito bites.

  3. Oh man, get well soon!!
  4. Jon S

    Jon S Well-Known Member

    Sorry to hear. Have heard of long term exposure effects from solvents absorbed through skin or inhaled, but nothing from ducks. A buddy of mine had similar symptoms, docs couldn't diagnose for years. Thought it was from mercury, lead, mold, all these ideas. Finally turned out to be Lymes disease. They could not diagnose it for some reason. Hopefully it is just a bad enchilada and will work itself out.
  5. Glass eye

    Glass eye Active Member

    So your DR thinks it's because of quack ?.........but seriously, hope you get better and pray God gives your DR wisdom. I doubt very seriously it's from ducks. I'm no DR but I've been mounting ducks for 39 years and have never heard of such a thing. Lymes is a more likely culprit.
  6. dstreet

    dstreet New Member

    I don't think it's from the ducks either but they're testing everything right now. All I know is that I'm in really bad shape. It feels like I'm on an episode of house.
  7. wolfgang

    wolfgang New Member

    Get well Man!!! My nephew had exactly the same symptoms your saying you have. Turned out he had Lyme's disease which turned into meningitis. He was hospitalized for several weeks.
    Good luck.
  8. Ive been mounting waterfowl for over 30 years . Never had any problems like you mention. I try to avoid chemicals as much as I can. If I do use any I try to heed all the safety precautions . Praying that the doctors will find out what is giving you problems and that you will return to health very soon. Please keep us posted
  9. hounddog

    hounddog New Member

    I just spoke with a friend that was hospitalized for symptoms more consistent with appendisitis. His lymph nodes were the size of baseballs and they had to remove 20" of small intestine. It is believed that he ingested some bread from a bag of bread we were using to catch carp with during a fishing tournament. The area we used to fish in was loaded with waterfowl feces and therefore the doctors believe it was Yersinia(not sure on spelling). They never could culture anything but he recovered with this treatment. Hope this helps in some way. Get well!

    Sent from my SCH-R760 using Ohub Campfire mobile app
  10. BrookeSFD16

    BrookeSFD16 Well-Known Member


    Got alot of folks around here with it. Done killed 6, mostly kids, but some healthy adults too. Hope you get it figured out and get better.
  11. George

    George The older I get, the better I was.

    The headaches are puzzling. I do know that breathing the fumes of denatured alcohol and formaldehyde are sure methods to end up with splitting headaches. Continued contact with them will quickly digress into other symptoms you describe. Are you using formulin on your birds? If so, that's likely the culprit.

    I've had West Nile virus and Lymes (6 times and counting now), but the effectss of them didn't involve vomiting. West Nile was the worse as I felt as if I was going to die and then I was afraid I wouldn't. It really kicked my butt. If they're testing for it, make SURE you lab is running the "western panel". Routine testing for Lymes will often miss many of the 21 different strains associated with Lymes.
  12. NJTrapper

    NJTrapper Member

    I see you are from Jersey. Within the last few months, there was a woman diagnosed up here in Warren Co. with a new strain of Lymes that has been going unknown. Do as George says and get the full western panel and have your doctors look into and research what went on with this special case in Warren Co. If you also do deer mounts, you are def. dealing with ticks.
  13. James Marsico

    James Marsico Well-Known Member

    This past September I spent 5 days in the hospital. 105.8 temp and everyone including me thought I was going to die. Turned out my main problem was bacteria in my blood stream. It was day three before the Docs discovered what the main problem was. They could not tell me why this all happened to me but personally I highly suspect a black bear that I was teaching a new helper how to flesh. I didn't wear gloves like I usually do and made him do because I was just was just on and off showing him how to do it things. It was a nasty bear. I was very sick, I am not sure what was worse, the high fevor, the cathitor,which felt like it was 2" around going in or the IV's and shots; one shot in my belly every morning! or the bill that will take me 5 years to pay off.
  14. antlerman

    antlerman NTA Life Member #0118

    Montezuma's Revenge.

    Hope you get well soon. Sounds bad.
  15. danielemt

    danielemt New Member

    Did they do blood cultures? Any fever? Kidney function? There is a nasty virus goin around with symptoms close to yours!
  16. wings II

    wings II New Member

    I'm sorry to hear this and I hope you are on your way to recovery. When you mentioned the vomiting I thought about Afla Toxins. It is very rare, but while your Doc's are checking into every possible cause have them look into the possibility that you've been infected by Afla Toxins. It would be an extremely long shot, but it is possible that the waterfowl you handled may have ingested Afla Toxins from moldy grain or other aquatic vegetation and that they've entered your system. Were any of the waterfowl you mounted pen raised? Also, many waterfowl feed on spoiled grain when migrating through farm country. The toxins can be checked for by blood and urine tests.

    Some Background:

    The discovery of aflatoxins began immediately after an outbreak of a disease of turkeys of unknown etiology in England in 1960. The disease was called Turkey “X” disease and was eventually attributed to a toxic groundnut meal imported from Brazil. From that point, an extensive effort to find the cause eventually elucidated that a species of mold, called Aspergillus flavus, was involved and the hepatotoxic products of this mold, found also as components in the toxic groundnut meal, were called aflatoxins. The finding that the aflatoxins were carcinogenic caused concern for their occurrence in human foods and led to worldwide efforts to determine the relationships of these carcinogens to human disease and determine their occurrence in human foods as well as in animal feeds. The findings that the aflatoxins were immunosuppressive resulted in establishing that they were probable underlying causes to other diseases, mostly infectious in nature. Subsequent efforts led to the finding that aflatoxins can occur preharvest and therefore the aflatoxins were no longer only a storage problem. Major crops such as corn, peanuts, cottonseed, and certain tree nuts were frequently found to be contaminated. These findings were cause for the aflatoxin problem to become a large multidisciplinary scientific investigation into various aspects of concern such as eradication, control, analysis, epidemiology, and plant pathology as well as major efforts to determine the nature of animal disease caused by the aflatoxins. Present-day investigations with aflatoxins continue with elimination as a major thrust based on knowledge of the biosynthetic pathway, genetics of both host and pathogen, host-parasite-vector interactions, plant breeding, biocontrol, and selected agronomic practices.

    Again, wishing you a speedy recovery. Keep us posted.
  17. dstreet

    dstreet New Member

    Thanks for all your replies. I've been too sick to check this for a few days. I've had 2 MRI's, blood work every day, CAT scan, ultrasound, lumbar puncture, nasal swab, and x rays. Culture results are still pending. White blood cells are elevated, otherwise everything is negative. I just spoke with the attending physician and made sure they are testing the western panel. My nausea and vommitting are a little better and I'm trying to eat today (just liquids). My headache is still severe but I am trying to reduce the frequency at which I take the narcotic. Thank you for your concern, advice, and prayers.
  18. rogerswildlife

    rogerswildlife Rogers Wildlife Taxidermy Tommy Rogers

    Man sorry to hear this hope you get well very soon .
  19. James Marsico

    James Marsico Well-Known Member

    praying for you
  20. Sprigpig1

    Sprigpig1 Member

    great info KMA... Get well soon and like everybody else said keep us updated.