Nothing can be more romantic than a vacation with the love of your life, filled with lots of exciting activities. A stroll on the beach sounds pretty romantic. Having your loved one’s hands in yours, sensing the sand under your feet and enjoying the marvellous view of the ocean is far better than eating in an expensive restaurant.

When Eddie Zytner and his loved one Katie Stephens planned their romantic trip to the Dominican Republic never would it cross their mind that a simple trip could turn into a torment.

Eddie Zytner and Katie Stephens (Facebook)

They had no clue that a beach stroll on the Caribbean would put them in danger. After returning home the couple discovered how bad it could be. Upon returning home from their 7 days trip to Punta Cana, they suffered itchy feet. In the beginning, they thought it was because of bug bites but they soon realized it was not a bug. Elite Daily reported that the couple noted swelling, bumps and vesicles on their feet.

Katie Stephens / Facebook

They had to go to the hospital many times but only after a few weeks later did they get a diagnose.

CTV News reports that it needed three doctors to point out that it was an infection known as cutaneous larva migrans which comes as a result of baby hookworms penetrating intact skin and burrowing in it. Unfortunately, this was only the beginning of what was to come afterwards.

Katie posted the event on her Facebook account wanting to forewarn others: She shared some scary photos indeed hard to view in case you are sensitive. Cutaneous larva migrans (CLM) is a skin disease, which is caused by the larvae of different nematode parasites of the microscopic hookworm family.

In a report to Windsor Star Eddie Zytner said,” I have dozens of worms in my feet, and so does Katie. It’s kind of sickening to think about.”He also mentioned that itchiness was” unbearable”. The itching comes as a result of inflammation that drags the microscopic worm causing redness and blisters as it goes to different parts of the foot. Hookworms are mostly found in tropical and subtropical environments and the southern region of the U.S.

Eddie and Katie posted pictures of their feet, showing how the condition got worse. (Facebook)

But now they are not restricted to these areas only due to international travel. So you better think twice next time you take a walk on a sandy beach in a tropical place.

The worms might enter your skin as you are walking on warm, moist sand. Larva migrans don’t survive for a long period of time inside the human body and usually die within days. But this was not the case for Katie and Eddie.

If left unsupervised for a long time, like Stephens and Sytner’s case, was, the bubbles and fractures further develop indicating where the worms wandered. Getting proper treatment would still be difficult even after being diagnosed.

Katie further explained, ”To top it all off, Health Canada denied our request to receive the medicine (ivermectin)we needed to treat our infection and (we)were forced to get medicine from the states.

In order to get medication, Eddie’s mother was forced to drive to America. ”Thank you Canada for your lovely health care you provide for us!”Katie added ironically. Associate professor of infectious diseases at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Daniel Caplivski, MD, said to Cosmopolitan that people must wear shoes to have their feet protected while walking on the beach

Katie Stephens / Facebook

You should be very careful while strolling on the beaches where stray animals and pets wander, and instead of (lying) directly on the sand, you better lie on a towel due to the fact that all bare skin is to the infection.

She wrote, ”If you leave the beach feeling itchy heed Stephen’s advice. We simply thought it was just bug bites, and it becomes worse as each day passed,” Having a stroll on the beach might sound great, but suffering a parasitic infestation does not feel the same.

Katie Stephens / Facebook

Katie shared photos on social networks to warn others and make them aware of the possibility of parasitic infections while on holiday. Hopefully, her forewarn will be of great help for the others to immediately act and seek medical treatment.

Help others by sharing this message!