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What is tapeworm infection?

Tapeworms are flat worms that live inside a host’s (humans, animals) intestines. When tapeworms enter the human body through some source, they cause various biologic problems constituting tapeworm infection.

Tapeworm can also infect a person through their eggs or larvae.

What are its main signs and symptoms?

  • The initial symptoms of tapeworm infection include nausea and vomiting. One may also develop fever, along with, weakness, fatigue, and diarrhoea.
  • A person usually loses their appetite. On the contrary, they may also experience increased hunger (more than normal).
  • If the worm migrates to other parts of the body, then there are symptoms like a headache and serious neurological problems like seizures.
  • A patient can also develop allergic reactions and rashes due to allergens released by the tapeworm.

What are the main causes?

  • Tapeworms can infect the human body from sources like infected beef and pork. Based on the source, there are six main types of tapeworms that infect humans.
  • Eating raw or improperly cooked meat of an infected animal or drinking contaminated water can cause an infection.
  • A person who eats food prepared by an infected person can also develop the infection.
  • Poor personal hygiene like not washing one’s hands properly while handling food and cooking with unclean hands increases the risk of infection.

How is it diagnosed and treated?

  • If you present with symptoms of a tapeworm infection, a stool sample is taken to check for eggs or worms in faeces.
  • Sometimes multiple stool samples are collected, since the worm may be absent from a sample, but you can still have an infection.
  • CT scans, MRI or ultrasound are also used for diagnosis, especially if you have a swelling in the abdomen or a suspected cyst.
  • Blood tests will reveal if there is an infection in the body, and if antibodies are formed against tapeworms.
  • Sometimes, a person will be completely asymptomatic while the tapeworm persists in the body.
  • Medicines specific to this infection are prescribed. It is important to complete the entire course of the medicines.
  • If there is pain or swelling, other drugs like anti-inflammatory medicines are also given, along with, anti-helminthic drugs like albendazole to kill the eggs and the worms.
  • In severe cases, where there is a severe infection in the liver or the lungs, surgical removal is needed.
  • Every patient must maintain good personal hygiene and consume a healthy diet to avoid being re-infected.
  1. Medicines for Tapeworm Infection
  2. Doctors for Tapeworm Infection
Dr. Neha Gupta

Dr. Neha Gupta

संक्रामक रोग

Dr. Jogya Bori

Dr. Jogya Bori

संक्रामक रोग

Dr. Lalit Shishara

Dr. Lalit Shishara

संक्रामक रोग

Medicines for Tapeworm Infection

Medicines listed below are available for Tapeworm Infection. Please note that you should not take any medicines without doctor consultation. Taking any medicine without doctor's consultation can cause serious problems.

Medicine NamePack SizePrice (Rs.)
TroyzoleTroyzole Suspension11
ADEL Filix Mas DilutionADEL Filix Mas Dilution 1000 CH144
VelocidVelocid 400 Mg Tablet52
Dr. Reckeweg FilixMas. DilutionDr. Reckeweg FilixMas. Dilution 1000 CH136
VolVol 400 Mg Tablet7
NiclosanNICLOSAN 500MG TABLET 4S0
VonigelVonigel Ointment14
VormoutVormout 200 Mg Suspension13
Win OrangeWin Orange Syrup60
WintilWintil 200 Mg Suspension4
WonilWonil 400 Mg Tablet0
WoridWorid 200 Mg Suspension6
WormalWormal 400 Mg Tablet14
WormcureWormcure 400 Mg Tablet9
WormexWormex 200 Mg Suspension20
WormfixWORMFIX 10ML SYRUP20
Wormin AWormin A 200 Mg Suspension9
WormkilWormkil Syrup9
WormpelWormpel 200 Mg Suspension15
Schwabe Cucurbita pepo CHSchwabe Cucurbita pepo 1000 CH96
WormtabWormtab 500 Mg Tablet9
XendaXenda 200 Mg Suspension20
Xeroworm AdXeroworm Ad 400 Mg Tablet8

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References

  1. Webb C, Cabada MM. Intestinal cestodes. Curr Opin Infect Dis. 2017 Oct;30(5):504-510. PMID: 28737550
  2. Center for Disease Control and Prevention [internet], Atlanta (GA): US Department of Health and Human Services; Parasites - Taeniasis
  3. MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia: US National Library of Medicine; Tapeworm infection - beef or pork
  4. Better health channel. Department of Health and Human Services [internet]. State government of Victoria; Tapeworms and hydatid disease
  5. healthdirect Australia. Tapeworm. Australian government: Department of Health
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