Intestinal parasites in adults and children

Intestinal parasites are worms that are parasitic in the human intestine, eat the contents or suck blood from the intestinal wall.

In humans, they can cause serious, life-threatening diseases. They occur mainly in children living in tropical and subtropical rural areas of Africa, the Middle East, South Asia, Indonesia and Central and South America.

some parasites in the human intestine

People from the Mediterranean areas of Europe and southern parts of North America they are relatively rare.

The adult size can reach from 1 millimeter to several meters. They invade the intestinal wall of man and begin to suck their blood or live there freely, using the nutrients.

The result of the activity of these parasites is inflammation of the small or large intestine, ulcers, anemia, deficiency of vitamins (mainly A, C, B12). In more severe cases there may be intestinal obstruction and then for help you must contact the surgeon.

The larvae can move to other organs (liver, spleen, bladder, muscles, lungs, brain) where they form cysts and cause allergic inflammation.

Infestation is the infection of human, animal or plant parasites (including worms).

The symptoms of infection

Intestinal parasites can live in the human intestine for many years without causing any symptoms.

Common symptoms and signs can appear a few weeks or months after the invasion and manifest as pallor, weakness, frequent tiredness (from anemia due to loss of blood sucked by worms), sleep disturbances and weight loss.

Abdominal symptoms can last from several weeks to several months and include:

  • Bloating.
  • Bad breath.
  • Loss of appetite.
  • Vomiting.
  • Itching in the anal area.
  • Diarrhea.
  • Blood in the stool.
  • The presence of worms or of the particles in the stool.
  • Itching and rash on the skin.
  • Swelling around the eyes.
parasites in the human intestine

Sources of infection

Eggs of intestinal parasites fall into the environment with infected feces of humans or animals. Outside the human body, eggs need several days or weeks to develop to the stage of the cysts, or immature worms (larvae) that can enter the human body through dirty hands or when you eat raw unwashed vegetables.

Another source of infection is eating rare meat domestic pigs, fish or wild animals (wild boar, deer, etc..).

Can also be transmitted through fleas, which are carriers of Pets.

A certain kind of intestinal parasites can penetrate through the skin during swimming or walking barefoot; when they reach the small or large intestine they begin to develop to adults.

Roundworms (nematodes)

Human Ascaris is found worldwide. It reaches a length of 16 cm and has a thickness with a pencil.

Nematodes are mainly found in tropical areas. After they enter the intestine, they begin to suck blood from the intestinal wall.


The white worm, the length reaches no more than half an inch. At night can come to the surface from the anus to the area to lay eggs, which leads to severe itching.


Cause trichinosis, can get infected if you eat poorly cooked infected meat.

They can move from the intestine to the muscles and other organs where they form cysts — encapsulated form, from which it is difficult to get rid of. The main symptoms — abdominal pain, muscles, joints, swelling of the eyes and skin rash.


Blood flukes cause intestinal schistosomiasis. Found mostly in Africa, the middle East, the Caribbean and South America. In length comprise no more than 25 mm in a thickness of about 1 mm. Eggs blood flukes can be detected in the feces and urine.


A tapeworm enters the human body through eating contaminated fish. The length of the parasite can reach 10 m. Common in Europe, Russia and the United States.

Bovine and porcine apni

It can be transmitted by eating undercooked beef or pork.

The parasite is distributed worldwide, are particularly prone to infection, people who live in rural areas. Adult worms can reach lengths of over 20 m.
parasites in the human intestine Trichinella

Cucumber tapeworm

Common in pet dogs and cats. People rarely are infected with intestinal parasite data in view of the fact that the main source of distribution of the cucumber tapeworm eggs fleas.

If you are suffering from inexplicable bloating, diarrhea, weakness or weight loss, first and foremost, your doctor should suspect as possible causes for the infestation of intestinal parasites. To confirm this you need to donate blood and feces for analysis.


For prevention is sufficient to comply with the following recommendations:

  • Always wash hands after using the toilet, operate the soil, as well as after contact with household Pets.
  • Do not walk barefoot and do not swim in stagnant shallow waters.
  • Carefully heat treated meat products.
  • Regularly undergo medical examination.