Human parasites: signs, symptoms and treatments

abdominal pain with parasites

Human parasites inhabit any of your organs and systems. These creatures enter the body from the environment and are transported throughout the body with the bloodstream. There are a large number of varieties of parasites that can inhabit the human body. All of them pose a threat to human health and cause negative changes in the functioning of organs.

Human parasites. The signs of the appearance of worms in humans are obvious and hidden. The obvious ones include "irrational" weight loss, pale appearance (skin anemia), chronic fatigue, nocturnal itching in the anal canal. These manifestations are well known and are indicative of contamination.

How You Can Get Infected With Worms

Human parasites. To protect yourself, you need to know 4 ways to spread and infect worm eggs with eggs:

  • Through soil and water - geohelminthiasis. They develop in sand, soil and water, then enter the human body and start laying eggs. In addition, the worm's eggs go outside along with the droppings and wait in the wings to infect a new person. Eating unwashed vegetables and fruits, dirty hands, and dust on food can cause human infection with geohelminths. Some parasite eggs enter the human body through the skin of the feet and ankles.
  • By direct contact. Worms in pets and humans are transmitted by hand contact, games, and joint activities.
  • Through the use of contaminated food of animal origin - biohelminthiasis. Eating raw and poorly processed meat (kebabs, bacon, preserves, homemade game) and fish (sushi, dried fish, preserved fish) is potentially dangerous. There is a possibility of getting intestinal infections and biohelminths.
  • With insect bites. This type of infection is quite rare. This includes intestinal myiasis, canthariasis and scoleciasis. Do not confuse parasite eggs with insect larvae, which also deposit under the skin of animals and people (eg fly larvae).

The main mechanisms of worm propagation

  • Soil, sand and other types of soil are the most fertile habitat for worm eggs. Fruit plants are in continuous contact with the soil. At harvest, vegetables, fruits and vegetables come into contact with the hands of workers, with the dusty shelves of vegetables and trucks. In such conditions, contamination of food with parasite eggs is highly likely. Therefore, it is necessary to wash the products of vegetable origin well under running water and then pour them with boiling water. You should be especially vigilant in the field, where pets roam around the yard and then enter the house. It's not hard to imagine what kind of sewer a cat or dog might put into their home after an evening walk. Flies and cockroaches also carry helminth eggs. When they sit on food, insects can infect their food. Any contact with soil and sand can lead to the entry of parasites into the human body. Therefore, it is necessary to wash your hands well, especially under your nails. This applies in particular to children.
  • From person to person. This infection mechanism is highly efficient. For example, pinworms lay eggs at night in the area around the anus. A child, in a sleep state, scratches the place where the eggs are laid, as the itch starts there. Thousands of eggs fall on clothes, on the bed, and in the morning on the doorknobs and on everything that a little restless touches in the morning even before washing your hands and washing your face. As a result, the entire family is at risk of infection.
  • By contact with water. Open water bodies contain a large number of types of worms. Taking a shower and accidentally swallowing water is a serious risk of infection.
abdominal pain in a child with parasites

Children are much more likely than adults to be susceptible to helminth invasion. This is due to the fact that the child's body is poorly protected (the defense mechanisms are in the formation phase), and the child is actively in contact with the external environment. It takes an incredible effort from parents to teach you the basics of personal hygiene.

A baby younger than 6 years is at high risk of infection. According to statistics, about 95% of children under 4 to 5 years are infected with worms. Therefore, it is necessary to pay special attention to prevention.

Most types of worms are inside the body, only there they lay eggs and, after a certain period of time, they die. For example, pinworms live from 6 to 8 weeks, roundworms - up to 1 year. The number of parasites in the body only increases with the entry of new eggs from the outside.

The treatment allows you to get rid of the worms much faster and stop laying eggs in the intestine. It is nearly impossible for children with helminth infestation to recover without medication. New eggs will constantly enter the oral cavity, replenishing the rows of adults in the child's body.

What are the signs to recognize helminth invasion

It is not uncommon for cases of helminthic invasion, in which diseases of Organs internal organs are aggravated, and diseases that did not appear previously occur. These are considered hidden signs. A person is taken for treatment for many illnesses and the cause is left unattended. At the same time, therapy does not bring results. Here are some examples of such cases:

Infectious diseases as a result of decreased immunity

Parasites, being in the human body, consume many nutrients and release toxic substances. Such circumstances significantly reduce the patient's immunity. An exacerbation of chronic diseases, various inflammatory processes in the nasopharynx can start. Standard treatment for sinusitis or stomatitis is useless. It is important to rule out the cause.

In girls and women, inflammation of the appendages of the uterus, vulvovaginitis and vaginosis of various origins can often start.

General malaise as a result of body intoxication

parasites in the human intestine

The more severe the patient's helminthic invasion, the more harmful substances the parasites release. This has a detrimental effect on the well-being and nervous system of adults and children. An example of this is migraine, dizziness, joint pain. Overcoming the nausea, the person takes painkillers, but the pain returns in a short time: the cause of the illness was ignored.

In children, disorders of the nervous system are accompanied by irritability, apathy and aggression.

If your child has started sleeping poorly, talking in dreams, having nightmares, or going to school, it's time to start preventing helminthiasis.

Allergic reactions, skin pathologies

Human parasites. Worm residues are perceived to trigger allergens. Skin reactions (rash, itching, rash, peeling skin) are the least symptoms that can occur when an allergy starts. There is a likelihood of general body reactions: asthma exacerbation, rhinitis, cough. Sometimes, helminth invasion is accompanied by brittleness and hair loss, cracking of the skin on the heels, and peeling of the nails.

gastrointestinal problems

Depending on the severity of the infection, symptoms can range from mild to severe forms of the disease. From mild nausea and diarrhea, to chronic flatulence, constipation, vomiting, pain in the navel and hypochondrium. Tissue worms do not affect the gastrointestinal tract as much as intestinal parasites.

In which organs can parasites live?

Human parasites are divided into two categories, which correspond to the place of activity in the donor's body.

  • Cavity - worms that live in various parts of the gastrointestinal tract. There are about 100 varieties of intestinal parasites and a few dozen species for each section of the intestine. The small intestine is ready to accept roundworms, antilostomy, large tapeworms, and other less common "siblings. "The small intestine "will share living space" with pinworms, dwarf tapeworms and others. The medical literature describes cases where a person was simultaneously infected with several types of parasites.
  • Tissue - worms located in organs, tissues, and even blood. Modern medicine successfully deals with paragonimiasis (lungs), cysticercosis (brain), echinococcosis (liver) and filariasis (lymphatic vessels). Some worm larvae move through the body through the circulatory system and randomly attach to any organ. If too many eggs are introduced, the entire body can become infected.

Worm symptoms depending on the type of parasite

Symptoms are different for different types of worms in humans. It is also worth considering the duration and intensity of the parasite infection, the general condition of the patient before the infection. The table below summarizes the main symptoms of the presence of worms in humans by type.

Type of parasite (disease) infection method Symptoms Time of onset of symptoms
Pinworms (enterobiasis) With plant-based foods. Itching at night around the anus, presence of parasites in the stool, short-lived acute pain in the navel. 2-3 days after infection
Vlasoglav (trichocephalosis) With contaminated food prepared in unsanitary conditions. Symptoms are expressed only with severe invasion: diarrhea, abdominal pain, loss of appetite, inflammation of the appendix. In children, body growth can be slowed and even rectal prolapse can occur. few weeks
Broad tapeworm (diphylobotriasis) By eating infected river fish. This parasite can live up to 25 years inside the patient. Mechanical damage to the intestines, vitamin deficiency, intestinal obstruction, body intoxication, allergies. few weeks
Roundworm (hookworm) When walking barefoot on loaded ground. Itching, swelling of the feet and legs where the parasite enters. Cough, phlegm, damage to bronchi and lungs. Weakness, dizziness. The menstrual cycle in women is disturbed. Men have impotence. Many days
Ascaris (ascariasis) With plant-based foods. Bowel pain, peritonitis, bronchitis, pneumonia, liver disease, pancreas. May cause suffocation by crawling from the gastrointestinal tract into the esophagus or respiratory tract. about 3 months
Trichinella (trichinosis) Poorly processed meat, lard. Nausea and bouts of heartburn, diarrhea. 2 days
Liver and giant worm (fascioliasis) Plant food and water. Fever, dry cough, loss of appetite, abdominal pain. 2-4 weeks

The symptoms of helminthiasis are as diverse as the pathogens of the parasitosis, their life cycle, routes of entry, migration and preferred location are different from each other.

The general symptoms of parasitic diseases are explained by the fact that, with helminthic invasions, the parasites suppress the person's own immunity, contributing to the development of inflammatory and autoimmune processes. General symptoms are associated with intoxication, death of parasites, their vital activity and reproduction, manifesting as weakness, lability and mood changes, decreased performance and academic performance, memory and ability to learn in children.

heaviness and pain in the side with parasites

Pain in the right hypochondrium, bitterness, appearance of jaundice may indicate that the parasitic disease is located mainly in the hepatoduodenal zone (the area of the liver and ducts). At the same time, the patient may notice nausea, episodes of regurgitation (vomiting).

Human parasites associated with damage to the liver and ducts belonging to the hepatobiliary system are observed, for example, when infected by the flatworm - opisthorchis. This helminth enters the body of the ultimate owner - a person - by eating poorly processed fish of certain breeds (carp).

Symptoms associated with damage to the liver and ducts related to the hepatobiliary system are observed, for example, when infected with the flatworm - opisthorchis.

The disease is endemic and has special distribution areas. For the transmission of the pathogen, the parasite larva must go through a complex cycle with change of host (a mollusc of a certain species, a fish of the carp family).

Human parasites. Often, with many parasitic diseases, there are certain skin manifestations in the form of itchy skin, various rashes, itching, atopic dermatitis, eczema, and other progressive skin diseases. Cutaneous processes are not always associated with helminth invasion and are unsuccessfully treated by dermatologists.

It is important that with helminthiasis any organs and tissues can be affected, patients are often worried about headache, arthralgia (articular syndrome), complaints of the upper and lower respiratory tract. Frequently, persistent cough, frequent SARS, pharyngitis, laryngitis, and respiratory distress are associated with inflammation, a key place in the pathogenesis of parasite (helminth) infection.

Giardiasis and its characteristics

Giardiasis is a protozoan disease in which the pathogen exists in vegetative form and in the form of cysts. Giardia infection occurs by ingestion of cysts, which are very persistent in the environment and can persist for a long time in the environment (soil, food, water, various objects).

1 ml of faeces can contain millions of lamblia cysts, which, when placed in a favorable environment, can develop into vegetative forms. In the human intestine, a vegetative, mobile form is formed from cysts for several hours with flagella trapped between the cells of the intestinal epithelium, where the pathogen finds a favorable environment for itself with a sufficient amount of carbohydrate, which is a favorite substrate for lamblia.

Giardia in a favorable environment are divided binary (into two parts), and soon their number increases many times. In addition to the intestines, the vegetative forms of lamblia affect the hepatobiliary system (bile ducts, gallbladder).

Giardiasis symptoms are associated with asthenia, poor academic performance, weakness, in combination with signs of intestinal and hepatobiliary tract damage. The course of giardiasis and other parasitic diseases is largely associated with the characteristics of the immune response. Intestinal form, gastroenterocolytic - a common form of giardiasis. The pathogen's endotoxins can affect the nervous system, which explains the presence of many common extraintestinal symptoms.


Another common and ubiquitous parasitic disease is ascariasis. This helminthiasis occurs more frequently in children, but in adult patients it usually causes numerous complaints and symptoms. Many chronic inflammatory diseases, as well as somatic pathologies, can be initiated by parasitic invasion and intensify in the presence of various parasites (including ascaris).

Often, children and adults with ascaris develop chronic colitis, enteritis, bronchitis, even a serious illness like bronchial asthma; other allergic processes (atopic dermatitis, eczema, rhinitis, psoriasis) can be supported.

Human parasites. Ascaris enters the stomach when eggs are swallowed. After entering the upper parts of the digestive tract (stomach), the larvae, freeing themselves from the capsule, migrate to the blood vessels, with the blood flow entering the alveoli of the pulmonary system, causing the patient to cough, cough and other phenomena of bronchitis .

cough with parasites in the body

This condition is often considered a viral infection, exacerbation of chronic bronchopulmonary disease and is usually associated, in this case, with the movement of parasite larvae.

After coughing up ascaris larvae and carrying pathogens with phlegm into the pharynx, they are swallowed with saliva and re-enter the stomach, then pass to the intestines, where there are favorable conditions for the growth and development of the parasite.

In the human intestine, roundworms, feeding on their contents, transform into sexually mature individuals (female 50 cm, male 20 cm). In the process of growth and vital activity, as well as as a result of the migration of larvae, the parasite has a negative mechanical and toxic effect on the human body.

In the process of growth, vital activity, egg laying and maturation, the pathogen has a suppressive effect on the body's immunity and can cause diseases in the lungs, intestines and other parts of the digestive tract, anemia. Ascaris can live in the human intestine for up to a year.

Helminth Remedies

Medical treatment of a person with pills is possible with the help of a large number of modern anthelmintic drugs, which are prescribed by a specialist.

Since some funds do not work with larvae and worm eggs and there is also a high risk of reinfection (self-infection by worms), the course of treatment is repeated after 2-3 weeks. Among the popular methods, the most effective are the ancient time-tested methods - the use of pumpkin seeds and tansy herb.

The fact that pumpkin seed is a good anthelmintic agent has been known for a long time, it is best to buy seeds in their husk, peel them yourself, preserve and eat a thin film between the seed and husk and consume 300 g in the morning . within an hour, previously chopped and mixed with honey or jam. So don't eat for 3-4 hours and have an enema, you can repeat this treatment after 2 weeks.

Interesting facts about human parasites

  • According to the WHO, around 3 billion people are infected with helminth infestations annually. 1, 2 billion suffer from enterobiasis, 0. 9 billion from hookworm, 0. 7 billion from trichocephalosis. And these are just official statistics!;
  • In European countries, one in three inhabitants carries intestinal parasites in their bodies;
  • With severe invasions, a person loses up to 500 ml of blood a day. This gives rise to illness and chronic fatigue;
  • Some parasites are located in the brain, eyeball, bone marrow and can live there for up to 30 years. For example, cytisteryk;
  • Female Ascaris lay 240, 000 eggs per day. Constant reinfection will not allow a person to be cured for the first time. Repeated courses of treatment are needed;
  • Parasite residues - poisons and toxins - harm human health 24 hours a day;
  • Some types of tapeworms reach lengths of up to 12 meters. Sometimes it threatens to clog the human intestine;
  • Pumpkin seeds contain cucurbitins, which help to cure worm infestations without resorting to medication. Pumpkin seeds are often given to children for prevention;
  • It is ideal to treat pets every 3 months. Thus, you will save yourself and your children from the parasites;
  • Earthworm eggs can wait on the wings on doorknobs for up to 6 months;
  • An infected dog spreads the eggs of the parasites by breathing within a radius of 5 meters;
  • Not to be digested in the stomach and intestines, the worms and their eggs release protective anti-enzymes;
  • Trichinella does not lay eggs, but produces ready-to-eat worms. Therefore, it is impossible to detect the presence of this parasite under laboratory conditions;
  • The most effective assay for detecting invasion is considered the enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Swabs and stool analysis may not provide reliable information.

In summary, it must be said that regular prevention of helminth infections, even with cheap drugs (also considered the mildest), helps to protect the whole family. Be responsible for hand and body hygiene and prepare food well for use. Children and pets need constant monitoring for parasites.