Nairobi, Kenya: Irene Myangoh, a personal assistant working at a law firm in Nairobi went to an upmarket hair salon along Kenyatta Avenue, and spent more than N5,500 on a human hair weave.
Two weeks later she started suffering from severe headache that would not go away. She would wake up with severe headache at night.
She went to a private doctor who gave her drugs for the relief of mild to moderate pain of inflammatory origin with or without fever; they would only work for a few hours and then the headache would be back worse than even before.
Desperate, she went to see a specialist who did blood tests and even a brain scan. All the tests were negative but the headache persisted, making her unable to concentrate at work and sleeping very poorly.
She went back to her doctor who decided to examine her scalp and under the beautiful weave he found worms!
The worms were burrowing into her skull and after sending the samples to the lab they found that the hair had eggs from which the worms had hatched.
The doctor told her that the hair was probably from a corpse because those worms are usually found on dead bodies. Efforts to reach her doctor for further comments were fruitless for he was said to be out of the country.
The manager of the salon where Irene got the hair product was traumatised and said they had fitted ten weaves from the package already, adding that the particular batch of hair had sold very fast; in less than a month, she had sold over 150 pieces.
“I am shocked to hear this because this is the first time such a thing is happening to my clients. I will get more information from my supplier because we import these weaves from the UK, USA and India,” says the salon manager who did not want to be mentioned.
She continued to say: “Maybe, the supplier sent us rejects from the factory or weaves that had overstayed in the stores but I promise to follow up on the matter and compensate Irene.”
Irene had to shave after this ordeal and took antibiotics for two weeks.
Dr CK Musau, a surgeon at Nairobi hospital says that he has dealt with more than ten cases of the same in a period of six months.
He further urges ladies to be very careful with what they put on their heads, and adds that it is better to appreciate natural beauty and be content with what God has blessed them instead of chasing artificial beauty.
“It is unfortunate how the West has influenced Kenyan youth; especially ladies. They should stick to their natural African beauty as opposed to trying to ape what they see,” says Musau.
Dr Musau reiterated that the youth must keep in mind that of late, Kenyans can sell anything: from body parts to human beings to used coffins and now even weaves that seem to come from corpses.
Elsewhere, 16-year-old girl from Buruburu, a Nairobi surburb, also suffered the same fate but unfortunately for her she died. Cobweb eggs were found in her hair after she died.
There was a profound cobweb design in her weaved hair. She dropped dead after constant headaches.
The root cause? The weave had unnoticed spider eggs. The warmth produced after weaving provided a very conducive environment for the eggs to hatch.
A spider grew in her scalp and bit her. The poison found its way to her blood. She could not survive the attack.