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Tapeworm Infection

What is a Tapeworm Infection?

A tapeworm infection is the presence of live tapeworms in the intestine.

Tapeworm infections are usually not serious. However, if not treated properly, the tapeworms can penetrate the intestinal wall and spread to other organs.

Tapeworm infection is also called cestodiasis.

What are Tapeworms?

Tapeworms are a group of parasitic worms that live in the intestinal tracts of some animals.

Tapeworms are segmented, with each segment capable of producing eggs. Eggs are dispersed by individual or groups of segments detaching and passing out with the stool. The groups of segments from the beef tapeworm are capable of movement and actively crawl out through the anus.

Several different species of tapeworms can infect humans.

What are the Symptoms of Tapeworm Infection?

There are usually no symptoms. Tapeworm infection is usually recognized when the infected person passes segments of tapeworms in the stool.

When symptoms are present, the most common symptoms are:

  • hunger
  • dizziness
  • fatigue
  • loss of appetite
  • weight loss
  • vomiting

How is Tapeworm Infection Diagnosed?

A doctor will examine the stool is examined for tapeworm eggs and segments of tapeworms.

How is Tapeworm Infection Transmitted?

Tapeworm infection is acquired by eating raw or undercooked meat of infected animals. The larvae from the infected meat develop in the human intestine into the adult tapeworm. An adult tapeworm can grow larger than 12 feet.

How is Tapeworm Infection Diagnosed?

A doctor will examine the stool is examined for tapeworm eggs and segments of tapeworms.

Can Tapeworm Infection be Treated?

Yes. Tapeworm infections are treated with oral medications.

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