As a effect, that 61-year-old NY backwoods gourmand died after developing a deadly brain disorder triggered by squirrel brains he ate.
The 61-year-old was brought to Rochester Regional Health hospital in 2015 saying he was having trouble thinking clearly, was losing touch with reality and could no longer walk on his own, researchers said in an October 4 report on on the case, according to Live Science.
The 61-year-old NY man was brought to hospital after he had difficulty thinking, was losing touch with reality and he couldn't walk by himself, according to a case report presented to an infectious diseases forum last week.
Only a few hundred cases of vCJD have ever been officially reported, most tied to consumption of contaminated beef in the United Kingdom in the 1980s and 1990s.
A Rochester, New York, resident might have caught one of the most frightening brain diseases around in one of the strangest ways possible - eating squirrel meat contaminated with zombie-like proteins.
The New York Post reports the man had been known by his family to "eat squirrel brains".
Around one in a million people around the world have been infected with CJD, with just 350 cases occurring in the USA every year.
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A hunter may have died from an "ultra-rare mad cow-like disease" after he ate squirrel brains.
There are three forms of CJD, and just one form (which includes vCJD) is caused by exposure to infected brain or nervous system tissue. It is believed that the man's habit of eating squirrel brains may have raised his risk for vCJD. There is no treatment or cure.
Doctors discovered the man had developed a rare degenerative disease called Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD). It's a "debilitating disease" that progresses quickly and usually results in death within one year of diagnosis, Chen told Live Science.
The infection is always fatal, and most who get the disease live around a year.
Of the five cases detailed in their report, however, two were eventually confirmed not to be CJD after all.
This unusually high number caused the doctors to review all suspected CJD cases at the hospital between 2013 and 2018.
However, CJD can be confirmed only with a test of brain tissue on autopsy at death.