Every hummus-loving soul near our hospital started freaking out as soon as they heard the news, coming to us certain they'd been infected. When people hear about a parasite going around, they just assume that's to blame for any ache and pain in their body.
We once had a retired dentist call the hospital because he claimed he was seeing worms come out of his eyes. The doctor didn't see anything, but somehow this patient got a hold of the lab (the hospital's security guards can be, uh, too helpful at times). He spoke to a tech who is a master parasitologist, who explained, "No you have to go to your doctor to collect specimens the proper way, and then we'll have an answer." The patient didn't like that idea, and he decided to just start collecting stool samples on his own, the system be damned. He mailed us his specimens in a box, about 18 inches wide and 18 inches long. It was full of feces, as well as his and his wife's hair and skin, his dog's poop, and cat poop.
"Please refer to the scratch-and-sniff labels to identify the poop you need for your tests."
Obviously, it was all useless to us. You can't just drop s**t off at the lab in a hat box. You have to preserve this stuff or it breaks down. Other times, patients just aren't particularly well instructed on how to collect their poop samples. So we've literally gotten things like poop on a plate, or patients who just scooped their s**t into food containers and shipped it on down to our office through the pneumatic tube system (yes, like at a bank drive-thru). I'd describe this in further detail but, y'know what? Here:
That is one small pile of s**t.