Army denies existence of reported parasite outbreak at Fort Knox

U.S. Army 1st Lt. Jennifer Larson, of Belle Plain, Minn., Company Alpha, 452 Combat Support Hospital, a medical-surgical nurse, administers pinworm medication to a Salvadoran girl during a medical readiness training exercise as part of Beyond the Horizon 2011 at San Ildefonso, El Salvador, April 28, 2009. (Photo by Sgt. 1st Class Craig Norton)

The Army is denying the existence of a parasite outbreak within National Guard units training at a base in Kentucky.

Soldiers within the Indiana National Guard’s 76th Brigade Combat Team have made reports of an alleged outbreak of parasitic pinworms that plagued their units during a three week training at Fort Knox.

“At this time there have been no confirmed cases of pinworm on the installation. Diagnoses require microscopic examination, which was not performed initially in the field, and all samples presented to Ireland Army Community Hospital have been negative,” said a spokesperson for Fort Knox in a statement.

One soldier sarcastically responded to Fort Knox’s statement by saying, “‘no confirmed cases’ as of yesterday?! Uhm it’s not like we talked to 20 infantry and fueler guys in a row and they sure didn’t tell us they all had it.”

Pinworm infections, which are highly contagious, are extremely common infections in which tiny worms infest the intestines and lay eggs around the anus.

According to officials at Fort Knox, “The “worms” found in the stool of the Soldiers in question have been identified by the IRACH lab as fly larvae, though the source was unknown.”

At least eight soldiers brought in samples -only one that was properly collected- to the Ireland Army Community Hospital at Fort Knox, according to Dr. James Stephens.

In Indiana, three to four samples were collected for testing and all of the tests, in both states, came back negative, according to Stephens.

“Worms looked more to be fly larvae rather than pinworms,” said Stephens.

Maj. Ben Tooley, a spokesperson for the Indiana National Guard confirmed Stephens diagnosis, saying, “There’s no pinworm issue going around.”

About 700 soldiers from the Indiana National Guard’s BCT’s 1st Squadron, 152nd Cavalry Regiment and 1st Battalion, 163rd Field Artillery Regiment arrived at Fort Knox for training on July 31st, according to Army Times.

The units allowed soldiers to leave the field to shower, clean their clothes and equipment after the  first reports of the “pinworms” occurred on August 11, according to Tooley.

“We’re working with the preventive medicine folks down at Fort Knox as well as unit leadership and state leadership of the Indiana Nationa Guard to determine the root issue of these reports,” said Tooley.

© 2016 Bright Mountain Media, Inc.

All rights reserved. The content of this webpage may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever without the express written consent of Bright Mountain Media, Inc. which may be contacted at, ticker BMTM.


Post navigation