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Trichinophobia- Fear of trichinosis

Trichinosis is a parasitic disease caused by eating raw or undercooked pork or other meats infected with the roundworm Trichinella spiralis larvae. Some people have this real and somewhat rational fear of eating undercooked pork or other wild game because of the fear of getting infected with the disease. Some might associate this fear of infection after watching alien movies wherein ingestion of the worm can cause the parasite to take over your body. Others may have the fear that something foreign is growing inside their body that could affect one’s health and this thought for them can be terrifying.

Other religious groups might preach that pork is an unclean animal and one reason that it is unclean is it could be affected by this roundworm thus some religious groups do not allow their members to eat pork.

Those affected with this phobia will refuse to eat meat, specifically pork and would even get nauseated and vomit if they accidentally eat pork. Other symptoms include palpitations, tremors, shortness of breath, abdominal pain and cramping which could be psychosomatic when they learn they have unintentionally consumed pork.

These patients should be educated that thoroughly cooking pork kills the worm and that it is safe for consumption. Those who refuse to eat pork should not be forced to because this can aggravate the fear. Anti-anxiety medications are rarely needed because avoidance usually controls symptoms of this phobia.