Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Pig Brains can Hurt Your Brains

In Minnesota a medical mystery had unfolded.

Workers at a meatpacking plant have had the same unexplained symptoms; fatigue, tingling and numbness in the legs and weakness.

The only thing they had in common was that they all worked in the same meatpacking plant.

This condition baffled doctors until they noticed a pattern. All people worked at the plant at the same station and complained of the same problem, “heavy legs.”

People who worked at the “head blowing” were the only ones who were afflicted with this illness.

Their job at this station is to extract the brain from the head of the hog. To do this a metal rod is shoved through the spinal column. Compressed air shot through the rod. This liquefies the brain, usually spraying the workers with brain matter.

Workers said they were usually covered with the spray by the time they left work. They wore smocks and protective eyewear. But their arms were bare and none wore faceguards to protect them from ingesting or inhaling the pig brains.

Doctors determined the ailment to “immune mimicry.” Their workers’ bodies were fighting the pig enzymes and brain matter. The problem is the pigs’ genetic make up is too close to the genes of humans. Because the genes were close their immune systems were fighting not only the pig genes but their own genes as well.

This was causing the immune system to attack itself.

The plant no longer uses the compressed air technique and orders all workers to wear face masks and other protective gear.

For more stories on meat plants:

Pig Brains May be Cause of Illness

Largest Slaughter House Has no Problems

Pig Brain may Cause New Illness

Mystery Disease Could be from Pigs