An Illinois family is suing a nursing home after a small horde of maggots was found crawling in their ailing 92-year-old mother’s ear.
“I was horrified, shocked. I thought it was terrible,” the woman’s husband, John McCann, 88, told CBS Chicago.
McCann said he spent his life savings to have his wife, Catherine, who suffers from Alzheimer’s and doesn’t talk, stay at the Home for the Aged in Arlington Heights, which costs about $10,000 a month, the station reported.
“I’m paying all this money for that kind of care, no way,” he said. “After giving them $270,000 of my hard earned money, my life savings I gave to them, and not even so much as a note or a call.”
The nursing home said a caretaker first noticed something was wrong after McCann couldn’t stop scratching and pulling on her ear one day last month.
The aide saw the larvae and McCann was rushed to a hospital, where doctors found 57 maggots crawling around in her ear canal.
Doctors said a fly must have flown into McCann’s ear and laid the eggs. They estimated the bugs had been living in her head for about two days.
The family said McCann was supposed to be receiving ear drops for wax buildup, but they suspected the nursing home wasn’t giving them to her.
“How can you put drops of medicine in an ear that has 57 maggots?” the family’s attorney, Henry Gruss, told CBS Chicago.
Mary McCann Stassen, McCann’s daughter, said the photos of the worms slithering out of her mom’s ear made her sick.
“It’s a picture I will never, ever get out of my mind, ever,” she told CBS.
The family is suing the home for emotional stress and negligence and has since transferred McCann to another home.