Symptoms of worms in humans can not always be observed in time. Worm infestations often have symptoms similar to other illnesses, such as allergies or indigestion. Helminths are parasitic in different parts of the human body. An infected person can treat liver failure, chronic cold or dermatosis without knowing the true cause of ill health.
What are helminths
Worms in humans are parasitic worms that can vary in size. They can enter the human body through the mouth, nasal passages, eyes, urethra or anus. Often, parasites live in the intestine, attaching to its walls using suction cups, tentacles or strange teeth. Parasites can live in the lung and brain tissue, on the mucous membranes of the respiratory tract, in the muscles, liver, and gall bladder.
Classification of helminthiases: types of worms in humans
Various types of helminths can become parasites in the human body. Medical helminthology divides them into groups taking into account the specificity of the body shape:
- Round (nematode)- has a holistic shape in the form of a lemon, thread, barrel or spindle. The head and tail of nematodes are slightly pointed. The oral apparatus is characterized as three layers. Parasites move freely in soil, fresh water and sea. The human body contains pinworms (which cause enterobiasis), roundworms, hookworms, and trichinella, which are considered intestinal parasites. Guinea worm - this roundworm spreads through the subcutaneous tissue.
- tapeworms (cestodes). These include the following types of parasites: cattle, pork, dwarf tapeworm, broad tapeworm. Their bodies resemble finely segmented ribbons, the length of which can reach 10 meters or more. The front of the parasitic worm is equipped with a suction cup and a hook attached to the intestinal wall. Echinococci have a complex fixation system - 4 suckers surrounded by two rows of hooks.
- Trematodes (flukes)— this type of worm is characterized by a specific habitat in the body: gall bladder, bile ducts. Representatives of the class of flukes are Siberian fluke (4-13 mm), fasciola (3-7 cm long).
How do you get infected with helminths?
Everyone should know why worms appear in humans and where they live in the body:
- Nematodes and dwarf tapeworms enter the body through dirty hands, eating unwashed vegetables, and drinking dirty water. Habitat: intestine.
- Trichinella, cattle, pork tapeworm - infection occurs when eating well-processed meat (beef, pork). Location: intestine.
- Opisthorchis, broad tapeworm (class trematode or tapeworm). A person can become infected by eating raw, under-salted or under-cooked fish. In fish, parasite larvae live in fat and muscle layers. In humans, they settle in the liver and gall bladder.
- Echinococci, Siberian fluke, fasciola are spread through contact with infected dogs; less commonly, cats are the source of infection. Helminths can parasitize the liver, lungs, kidneys, and heart of humans. They develop inside echinococcal cysts.
What do worms look like in human feces?
One can see dead roundworms in the stool 3-4 days after taking an anthelmintic tablet. The length of this parasite that lives in the human body can reach 40 cm, the edges are sharp, and the body is white.
Cream worms usually leave the body alive a few hours after consuming milk with garlic, too salty or spicy food. Small white worms (up to 12 mm long) with sharp edges are clearly visible in the feces and around the anus.
Large flatworms or tapeworms are almost impossible to see completely (length from 3 to 10 m). After feeding, the worms exit the body in decaying debris.
Signs of the presence of worms in humans
With helminthic attacks, symptoms in adults and children usually resemble the manifestations of other diseases. This is due to the location (respiratory tract, liver, bile) and life process of the worm.
During the acute period
It is believed that the acute stage is asymptomatic. But in most cases, the first signs of worms are mild, and a person ignores the parasitic disease. Less commonly, in infected people, signs of helminthiasis in the body occur with fever, nausea, and vomiting. The person feels weak and loses his appetite.
In the chronic phase
Symptoms of chronic helminthiasis depend on the type of worm, its number, and habitat.
Symptoms of intestinal worms in adults:
- digestive impairment;
- pressing pain in the navel area;
- intestinal dysfunction;
- lack of appetite;
- weight reduction;
- pale skin;
- bruises under the eyes;
- anal itching
The main signs of infection with helminths of the liver, gallstones, and lungs:
- constant fatigue;
- nerve damage;
- paroxysmal pain in the epigastric region;
- decreased performance;
- foul-smelling, greasy stools (steatorrhea);
- urticaria, skin itching;
- chest ache;
- chronic dry cough;
- skin color change.
Extraintestinal parasites (giardia, opisthorchis, fasciola) can trigger not only headaches or skin diseases, but also depression. Usually, a pathological condition occurs if skin allergy symptoms do not disappear for a long time (itching, dry skin, rash) or reappear after treatment.
How to detect worms: diagnosis of helminthic infestation
To diagnose helminths, feces are collected on worm eggs. But the analysis does not always show a positive result with the presence of parasites. First, not all types of worms are determined in this way. Second, the time of sending feces for analysis may not coincide with the time of parasite reproduction. A repeat test for worm eggs is done after 2-3 days. If the results with the presence of negative symptoms, then the following examination methods can be prescribed:
- Blood analysis- increased levels of eosinophilic leukocytes and low hemoglobin indicate infection with worms.
- Duodenal sound- helps identify opisthorchiasis, giardiasis and other extraintestinal worms in humans by examining secretions from the duodenum.
- Ultrasound of the abdominal cavity and other parts of the human body- the gastrointestinal tract, liver, gallbladder, its ducts, pancreas, muscles, brain, lungs are examined for the presence of pathological changes characteristic of worm life (seals, cysts, nodes, blockages).
- Chest X-ray- carried out if pulmonary parasites are suspected (roundworms, echinococci, tapeworm larvae are detected).
- CT scan- to detect worms in the brain, eyes, and lungs of humans.
- Capsule endoscopy- to identify tape parasites.
- ELISA— detect antibodies in the blood to most known parasites.
To assess the severity of damage to the body by worms, an immunological study is prescribed. It helps identify weaknesses in the human immune system. After this, complex therapy for pathological conditions is prescribed.
A quick and effective way to get rid of worms
It is better to learn how to remove helminths from the human body at an appointment with a parasitologist. Worm treatment without doctor's advice can cause intoxication and liver dysfunction.
Nutritional and hygienic features
Treatment of helminthiasis in adults and children should be accompanied by a diet that will help quickly get rid of worms and cleanse the body of toxins. It is necessary to exclude from the menu products that contribute to the vital activity of parasites or intoxication of the body:
- meat, lard;
- all kinds of sweets;
- fresh milk;
- baked goods;
- wheat porridge, pasta;
- coffee, alcohol.
Hygienic procedures for helminthic infestation include frequent and thorough hand washing with soap. The procedure must be carried out before eating, after visiting the toilet, and after returning from the road. Bed linen is changed 2-3 times during the week. Make sure you iron after washing. After showering, take a clean towel each time.
Treatment of worms in adults and children is carried out with the following drugs:
- A broad-spectrum benzimidazole anthelmintic drug - effective against nematodes and trematodes. Contraindicated in children under 2 years of age, prescribed with caution to pregnant and lactating women. The dose and frequency of medication depends on the type of worm. For roundworms and mixed attacks, 1 tablet is prescribed. 2 times a day for three days. Enterobiasis is treated for three consecutive days, taking 1 tablet a day. The course is repeated after 21 days. Echinococci in adults are eliminated by increasing the dose of the drug: the first 3 days - 500 mg in the morning and evening, the next three days - 500 mg three times a day until complete recovery from the parasite. The duration of treatment for echinococcosis is determined by the doctor (from 4 to 6 weeks).
- A broad-spectrum antihelminthic drug from the pyrazinisoquinoline group. Contraindicated for children under 4 years of age and pregnant women (first trimester). Effective for muscle/tissue worms. Urogenital schistosomiasis (worms live in blood vessels near the bladder), intestines and stomach are treated with a single dose of the drug (40 mg/10 kg). In severe forms of parasitic vascular pathology, tablets are taken 3 times a day (every 6 hours) at 20-25 mg/10 kg.
- A broad-spectrum drug from the group of benzimidazoles. Not prescribed for children under 2 years of age, pregnant or lactating women. Adults are prescribed 400 mg/day once, children at a rate of 60 mg/10 kg for intestinal helminthiasis. For parasites in the brain, adults are prescribed 800 mg / day, children - 15 mg / kg, the course of treatment is 8-30 days.
Antihelminthic drugs are toxic. They are not prescribed to people with liver failure, ulcerative colitis, or Crohn's disease.
How to cure worms with home remedies:
- Grind flax seeds (1 tablespoon). Pour the powder into 0. 5 liters of cold water. Bring the mixture to a boil, cook over low heat, covered, for 20 minutes. Drink 100 ml in the morning and evening on an empty stomach for 10 consecutive days. The recipe helps against almost all parasites that can live in the human body - pinworms, tapeworms, Giardia.
- Grind 300 g of dried, but not fried, pumpkin seeds. Add enough warm water to the powder to make a paste. Add a tablespoon of honey. Eat the whole mixture on an empty stomach. After 4 hours, take a laxative. Effective recipes for intestinal worms in humans.
Which parasite can only be removed by surgery?
Surgical treatment of helminthiasis requires the following conditions:
- Obstruction of the intestinal tract - a pathological condition provoked by roundworms, tapeworms, worms and other worms.
- Intestinal wall penetration - bovine tapeworms make a hole and exit into the human abdominal cavity.
- Parasitic cholecystitis with subsequent necrosis of the pancreas is a blockage of the bile ducts by tapeworms.
Often, surgery is used for echinococcosis. Parasite cysts in infected people in the lungs, kidneys, liver, spleen are removed through laparotomy or laparoscopy.
How dangerous are helminthic attacks for the body?
If not treated, the pathology takes a chronic form. The most dangerous thing that can happen in the body during a severe form of the disease is the destruction of internal organ tissue, shortness of breath, and the onset of blindness.
How to protect yourself from infection
Prevention of helminthic attacks in the body requires a person to:
- Carefully observe the rules of personal hygiene.
- Treat parasites in pets immediately.
- Heat fish for 60 minutes, meat for 2-3 hours.
In people with strong immunity, worm eggs are neutralized, so the immune system must always be strengthened. To do this, it is enough to lead a healthy lifestyle and regularly take vitamin and mineral complexes.