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Newly-weds catch rat disease while on honeymoon in Hawaii





Newly-weds from California had the honeymoon from hell after they contracted a rat disease that affects the spine and brain while in Hawaii.

Ben Manilla (64) and Eliza Lape (57) spent two weeks in Hana, Hawaii after their wedding in January, and caught the rat lungworm disease.

The couple began experiencing pains before they returned home to San Francisco.

"My symptoms started growing to feeling like somebody was taking a hot knife and just stabbing me in different parts of my body," Eliza told Hawaii News Now.

The couple were rushed to hospital and will have to undergo intensive rehabilitation.

Ben Manilla said he suffered from two pneumonias, a blood clot and kidney issues.

Rat lungworm disease is spread by a parasite that infects rats. Humans can acquire rat lungworm by eating raw produce containing a small slug or snail, or part of one. Eating contaminated animals, including freshwater shrimp and land crabs, can also lead to infection.

According to Hawaii News Now, the risk of contracting the illness can be reduced by thoroughly inspecting and washing fresh produce.

The Hawaii Department of Health said there were 11 confirmed cases in 2016, all on Hawaii Island.

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