- How can you get helminths?
- Basic mechanisms for the spread of helminths
- What are the signs of recognizing helminthic invasion?
- In which organs can parasites live?
- Symptoms of helminths depending on the type of parasites
- How to pass a test for the presence of helminths in the body?
- How to cure helminths?
- Nematode treatment (pinworms, roundworm, etc.)
- Interesting facts about human parasites
In modern society, helminths are still widespread. Especially often worm infestation occurs in children, hunters, fishermen and their families, as well as villagers.
Helminths are a large detachment of parasitic worms that live off animals and plants, feeding on and multiplying inside the body of the donor. Man is no exception. Only in the territory of Europe there are more than 70 species of parasites. According to statistics, every third person on Earth is infected with parasitic worms. It is assumed that there is not a single adult person for whose life he would not have a single worm in the body.
No matter how carefully the parents monitor the cleanliness of the hands of their children, it is almost impossible to protect them from helminths (pinworms). Children explore the outside world, nature awakens a particular interest. They want to touch everything, taste it. People who eat fish, meat of wild animals and birds, home-made milk are at risk of catching trichinosis and diphyllobothriasis.
Modern medical data show that many diseases occur due to helminthic invasion. For example, oncology has been clinically proven to be associated with long-term infestation of parasites. Signs of the presence of helminths in humans are often misunderstood by doctors and patients. They begin to treat non-existent diseases of the gastrointestinal tract. Patients can go to the doctors for a long time, complaining of indisposition. They spend time, money and even more undermine health, taking unnecessary medication. Ultimately, recovery occurs only when the cause of the symptoms is eliminated. After proper treatment, all associated symptoms stop bothering patients.
In this article we will answer the following questions:
- How can you get helminths?
- What are the signs of recognizing helminthic invasion?
- What are the signs of a helminths in human?
- Where do worms live in humans?
- What are the symptoms of helminths in humans?
- How do I get a helminth eggs test?
- How can you get rid of parasites?
How can you get helminths?
To protect yourself, you need to know about 4 ways of spreading and infecting with helminth eggs:
- Through soil and water – geohelminthiasis. They develop in sand, soil and water, then enter the human body and there they begin to lay eggs. Further, worm eggs get together with excrement into the external environment and wait its time to infect a new person. Eating poorly washed vegetables and fruits, dirty hands, dust on food can lead to human contamination with soil-worming. Some parasite eggs enter the human body through the skin of the foot and ankle
- Through direct contact. Helminths in pets and in humans are transmitted through hand contact, games, joint activities.
- Through the use of contaminated food of animal origin – biohelminthoses. Eating raw and poorly processed meat (kebabs, lard, meat preserves, home-made game) and fish (sushi, dried fish, fish preserves) is potentially dangerous. There is a chance of infection with intestinal infections and biohelmints.
- Insect bites. This type of infection is quite rare. These include intestinal myases, canthariases, and scoleciasis. Do not confuse parasite eggs and insect larvae, which are also deposited under the skin of animals and human skin (for example, gadfly larvae)
Basic mechanisms for the spread of helminths
- Soil, sand and other types of soil – the most beneficial habitat of helminth eggs. Fruiting plants are in continuous contact with the ground. When harvesting, greens, fruits and vegetables come into contact with the hands of workers, with dusty shelves of vegetable stores, and freight transport. In such conditions, the infection of products with parasite eggs has a high probability. Therefore, it is necessary to thoroughly wash products of plant origin under running water, and then pour boiling water over it. Particularly vigilant one should be in the countryside, where pets walk around the yard, and then go into the house. It is not difficult to imagine what kind of sewage a cat or a dog can bring in a house after a night walk. Flies and cockroaches are also carriers of helminth eggs. Insects can infect your food through contact. Any contact with soil and sand can lead to parasites entering the human body. Therefore, it is necessary to thoroughly wash hands, especially under the nails. In particular, this applies to children.
- From person to person. This infection mechanism is highly effective. For example, pinworms make an egg laying at night in the area around the anus. The child, in a state of sleep, scratches the place where the eggs are laid, since itching begins there. Thousands of eggs fall on clothes, on the bed, and in the morning on the door handles and on everything that the little fidget will touch in the morning before washing hands and washing. As a result, the whole family is at risk of infection.
- By contact with water. Open ponds contain a huge number of species of worms. Bathing and accidentally swallowing water are a serious threat of contamination.
Children are much more likely to become susceptible to worm infestation than adults. This is due to the fact that the child’s body is poorly protected (protective mechanisms are only being formed), and the child is in active contact with the external environment. Parents must apply a serious effort to teach him basic rules of personal hygiene. A baby under 6 years old is at high risk of infection. According to statistics, about 95% of children up to 4-5 years old become infected with helminths. Therefore, it is necessary to pay particular attention to prevention.
Most species of helminths are inside the body, only there they lay eggs, and after a certain period of time they die. For example, pinworms live 6-8 weeks, roundworm – up to 1 year. The number of parasites in the body increases only with the entry of new eggs from the outside. The treatment allows you to get rid of worms much faster and stop the laying of eggs in the intestines. Children with helminthic invasion are cured without drugs. New eggs will constantly get into the oral cavity, replenishing the numbers of mature parasites in the child’s body.
What are the signs of recognizing helminthic invasion?
Signs of the appearance of helminths in humans can be obvious or hidden. The “unreasonable” weight loss, pale appearance (anemia of the skin), chronic fatigue, night itching in the anal passageway can be attributed to the obvious ones. These manifestations are well known and indicate infection.
It is not uncommon for cases of helminthic invasion, in which diseases of internal organs are exacerbated, and diseases that have not previously manifested arise. This is considered to be covert signs. A person is taken for the treatment of many diseases, and the cause is ignored. In this case, the therapy does not bring results. Here are some examples of such cases:
- Infectious diseases as a result of reduced immunity.
Parasites, while in the human body, consume many nutrients, secrete toxic substances. Such circumstances significantly reduce the immunity of the patient. Exacerbation of chronic diseases, various inflammatory processes in the nasopharynx may begin. Treatment of sinusitis or stomatitis in the standard way is meaningless. It is important to exclude the cause. In girls and women, inflammatory processes of the uterus, vulvovaginitis, and vaginosis of various origins can often begin.
Folk omens say: if a person snores or gnashes his teeth in a dream, then it must be treated for parasites. But this is unconfirmed medical information.
- General malaise as a result of intoxication.
The more severe the helminth infestation of the patient, the more harmful substances the parasites emit. This has a detrimental effect on the health and nervous system of adults and children. An example of this is migraine, dizziness, pain in the joints. Overcoming nausea, a person takes painkillers, but the pain returns after a short time: the cause of the indisposition has been ignored. In children, disorders of the nervous system are accompanied by irritability, apathy, aggressiveness. If your child began to sleep poorly, talk in a dream, see nightmares, fails at school, then it’s time to prevent helminthiasis.
- Allergic reactions, pathology of the skin.
The waste products of worms are perceived as triggers of allergens. Skin reactions (rash, itching, rash, peeling of the skin) – this is the minimum of symptoms that can occur when allergies begin. There is a possibility of general body reactions: exacerbation of asthma, rhinitis, cough. Sometimes worm infestation is accompanied by brittleness and hair loss, cracked skin on the heels, nail foliation.
- Gastrointestinal disorders.
Depending on the massiveness of the infection, the symptoms can range from mild to severe forms of the disorder. From mild nausea and diarrhea, to chronic flatulence, constipation, vomiting, pain in the navel and hypochondrium. Worms in the tissues do not affect the digestive tract as much as intestinal parasites.
In which organs can parasites live?
Helminth parasites are divided into two categories that correspond to the place of activity in the donor’s body.
- Abdominal – worms that live in different parts of the digestive tract. There are about 100 species of intestinal parasites, and for each intestinal section there are a couple dozen species. The small intestine is ready to take ascaris, antilostom, broad lentets and other less common “siblings”. The small intestine “will share living space” with pinworms and dwarf chain and the rest. The medical literature describes cases when one person was infected simultaneously with several types of parasites.
- Tissue – worms localized in organs, tissues and even in the blood. Modern medicine successfully copes with paragonimiasis (lungs), cysticercosis (brain), echinococcosis (liver) and filariasis (lymphatic vessels). Some worms larvae move around the body through the circulatory system and are randomly attached to any organ. If multiple eggs have been introduced, the whole body may be infected.
Symptoms of helminths depending on the type of parasites
For different types of worms, the person will have different symptoms. Also consider the duration and strength of infection with parasites, the general condition of the patient before infection. The table below shows the main symptoms of the presence of helminths in humans by their variety.
|Type of parasite (disease)||Infection||Symptoms||Symptom development time|
|Pinworms (Enterobiasis)||With food of plant origin.||Night itching around the anus, the presence of parasites in the feces, sharp short-term pain in the navel.||2-3 days after infection|
|Whipworm (Trichocephalosis)||With contaminated food cooked in unsanitary conditions.||Symptoms are expressed only in severe invasions: diarrhea, abdominal pain, loss of appetite, inflammation of the appendix. In children, the growth of the organism may be delayed and even the prolapse of the rectum may occur.||a few weeks|
|Wide ribbon (difillobotrioz)||When eating contaminated river fish.||This parasite can live up to 25 years inside the patient. Mechanical damage to the intestine, vitamin deficiency, intestinal obstruction, intoxication of the body, allergies.||a few weeks|
|Roundworm (hookworm)||When walking barefoot on charged soil.||Itching swelling of feet and legs in places of parasite penetration. Cough, sputum, bronchus and lungs. Weakness, dizziness. Violated menstrual cycle in women. In men, impotence.||Some days|
|Ascaris (ascariasis)||With food of plant origin.||Pain in the intestines, peritonitis, bronchitis, pneumonia, liver disease, pancreas. May cause choking, crawling out of the digestive tract into the esophagus or respiratory tract.||About 3 months|
|Trichinella (Trichinosis)||Poorly processed meat, lard.||Nausea and bouts of heartburn, diarrhea.||2 days|
|Hepatic and giant fluke (Fascioliasis)||Vegetable food and water.||Fever, dry cough, loss of appetite, abdominal pain.||2-4 weeks|
How to pass a test for the presence of helminths in the body?
There are several ways to find out if an infection is present. In the clinic you will be offered to pass tests of saliva, feces and blood. Infectiologist and parasitologist deal with the issues of parasites. You can get a referral to them from a general practitioner. For a child, it is issued by a pediatrician. At home, you should be guided by your well-being. The list of infection factors given below is compiled in such a way that if 7 points coincide, there is a high probability of helminthic invasion. Calculate items that match your situation:
- Often, itching in the anus;
- The appearance of a rash on the skin;
- Cases of headache, dizziness have become frequent;
- Sudden frequent nausea. Vomiting without poisoning;
- The intestines are not in order (gas, pain, diarrhea, constipation);
- Sleep disturbances, insomnia;
- Sudden swelling of the legs;
- Allergy in the form of cough, bronchitis, asthmatic attacks, skin reactions;
- Lymph nodes are inflamed or enlarged;
- Sudden pains that quickly pass;
- Bitter taste in the mouth between meals;
- Weakness, fatigue without any particular reason
- If you are in contact with children of preschool age, you are in institutions;
- A sudden temperature increase without concomitant diseases;
- Skin and mucous tissues look yellower than usual;
- Do you have pets with whom you are constantly in contact;
- Muscle and joint pain in the absence of overstrain;
- Night snoring and teeth clenching in a dream;
- You have eaten dried fish, lard and other poorly processed meat products in the last couple of months;
- You have lost weight without any changes in diet and lifestyle;
- Sometimes you eat vegetables and fruits directly from the garden or from the store, without washing and scaling with boiling water.
If the probability of infection with worms is present, then it is urgent to engage in prevention and treatment. Read more about this below.
How to cure helminths?
It is not recommended to start self-medication. In Europe, about 60 species of worms are widespread, and for each it is necessary to select the appropriate drugs. Usually, doctors use 10 types of drugs and their analogues in accordance with the type of worms. These drugs have a slight detoxification effect on the patient.
Therefore, the intake of drugs should be carried out for sure when all the tests have been passed, and the identification of the parasites is completed. Some drugs, acting on the eggs of worms, do not affect adults. And vice versa. Therefore, during self-treatment, you need to carefully read the instructions for the medicine.
Usually, in case of helminthic invasions, 2-3 repeated courses are prescribed at once. This is due to the high probability of reinfection (reinvasion).
Nematode treatment (pinworms, roundworm, etc.)
|The main drug (active ingredient)||Release form||Analog||Release form|
|Piperazine (Piperazine Adipat)||pills||Piperazin-Darnitsa||Oral solution [for children], tablets|
|Pyrantel.||Oral suspension, coated tablets||(1) Helmintox, (2) Kombantrin, (3) Nemotsid||(1) Oral suspension, coated tablets. (2) Oral suspension, coated tablets. (3) Oral suspension, coated tablets|
|Mebendazole||Tablets, suspension, baby syrup||Vermox, Vermacar, Mebex, Vero-Mebendazole, Termox, Vormin||Tablets, suspension, baby syrup|
|Albendazole||pills||Nemozol, Helmodol-VM, Worm||Tablets, suspension, baby syrup|
Interesting facts about human parasites
- According to the WHO, about 3 billion people annually become infected with helminthic invasions. 1.2 billion are sick with enterobiasis, 0.9 billion with hookworm, 0.7 billion trichuriasis. And this is just official statistics!
- In European countries, every third inhabitant carries intestinal parasites in the body;
- Russia has flu and parasites in relatively equal quantities;
- For serious invasions, a person loses up to 500 ml of blood per day. From here, ailments and chronic fatigue originate;
- Some parasites are localized in the brain, eyeball, bone marrow and can live there for up to 30 years. For example, a quote.;
- Ascaris females lay 240.000 eggs per day. Permanent reinvasion will not allow a person to recover from the first time. Repeated treatments are required;
- Parasites’ vital waste products – poisons and toxins – undermine human health 24 hours a day;
- Some types of tapeworms reach lengths of up to 12 meters. Sometimes it threatens with the obstruction of the intestine of a person;
- Pumpkin seeds contain cucurbitins that help to cure helminthic invasions without resorting to medication. Children are often given pumpkin seeds for prevention;
- Optimally treat pets every 3 months. So you will save yourself and children from parasites;
- Worm eggs can wait in the wings on door handles up to 6 months;
- An infected dog disperses parasite eggs within 5 meters with the help of breathing;
- In order not to digest in the stomach and intestines, worms and their eggs secrete protective anti-enzymes;
- Trichinella does not lay eggs, but breeds ready-made worms. Therefore, in the laboratory it is impossible to detect the presence of this parasite;
- The most effective analysis for the detection of invasion is considered to be immunofermental. Smears, feces analysis may not provide reliable information.
To summarize, it should be said that regular prevention of helminth infections, even with cheap drugs (they are also considered the most benign), helps protect the entire family. Responsible to the hygiene of hands and body, carefully prepare food for consumption. Children and pets need constant monitoring for parasites.