The signs of a parasite can often appear unrelated and unexplained. As I
mentioned previously, there are MANY different types of parasites that we are
exposed to in our environments. I typically see parasites causing more
constipation in patients than diarrhea, but some parasites are capable of
changing the fluid balance in your gut and causing diarrhea. Trouble sleeping,
skin irritations, mood changes, and muscle pain can all be caused by the toxins
that parasites release into the bloodstream. These toxins often cause anxiety,
which can manifest itself in different ways. For instance, waking up in the
middle of the night or grinding your teeth in your sleep are signs that your
body is experiencing anxiety while you rest. When these toxins interact with
your neurotransmitters or blood cells, they can cause mood swings or skin
events such as climate change and an international trade have caused a number
of dangerous parasites to emerge in countries where they haven’t been found
before. The parasites, which can invade and damage vital body organs such as
the brain, range from one-celled organisms to relatively large tape worms.
Here are five that, though still thankfully rare, have made an appearance in
gingivalis is a soil-borne, free-living nematode. This worm is generally
harmless, but under certain conditions can infect humans and animals. H.
gingivalis is now detected worldwide and has reportedly caused neurological
disease in horses in countries including the UK, Japan, Canada, US, and
is rare and only affects those with compromised immune systems (for example
cancer or HIV/AIDS patients) but the outcome is always fatal meningo-encephalomyelitis
– an inflammation of the brain, spinal cord and their membranes. This was
the cause of the tragic death of two patients who
received infected kidneys in November 2014 in Wales.
colonises its host in different ways, including through ingesting contaminated
food or breaks in the skin and is usually only discovered after death.
tapeworm: Taenia solium
solium, also known as the pork tapeworm, can cause epileptic seizures
and other neurological problems in humans from ingesting eggs containing
infective larvae. The breakdown of the egg’s shell occurs in the intestines,
allowing the larvae to exit and enter the bloodstream. Once in the
circulation, larvae may settle in many types of body tissues.
cross the blood-brain barrier and enter the central nervous system (CNS),
where the embryos develop into fluid-filled cysts leading to a condition known
as neurocysticercosis which results in seizures and is one of the most
dangerous parasitic CNS infections worldwide. Diagnosis of neurocysticercosis
is difficult due to the lack of specific clinical symptoms. The disease –
which normally affects people in South America, Asia and sub-Saharan Africa
– has been exceptionally rare in Western countries, however a few cases have
been reported in the UK and the US.
amoeba: Naegleria fowleri
fowleri – commonly known as brain-eating amoeba – is
single-celled and free-living and thrives in warm bodies of water. This
parasite can cause a rare brain infection called meningoencephalitis, which
causes severe brain inflammation. The amoeba also causes a whole host of other
neurological symptoms and has a fatality
rate approaching 100%.
containing the amoeba enters the nose, the parasite can travel via the
olfactory nerves, which are responsible for detecting odour molecules and
transmitting them as signals to the brain. Initial symptoms appear in less
than a week after infection and include fever, headache, nausea, stiffness in
the neck, and vomiting. As infection progresses patients develop lack of
attention, loss of balance, seizures, hallucinations, and finally coma and
The parasite has
been detected in South
America and Asia
but cases have also been reported in Australia, US
and the UK.
fowleri infection is diagnosed based on microscopic examination of the
fluid present the central nervous system, where active amoebae may be
pedata, another free-living amoeba found in water was reported in a 38-year-old
patient with neurological symptoms from Texas.
4. Hidden lung
worm: Cryptostrongylus pulmoni
Hidden lung worm
is a microscopic roundworm that can be found in the blood of its host. This
parasite has been reported to secrete biological molecules which can damage
difficult due to the lack of specific clinical signs, especially when multiple
organs are affected. Infection with C. pulmoni is still hard to
determine, and it is possible that certain parasite subtypes exist that are
yet to be identified. One US study even linked
C. pulmoni with the development of chronic fatigue syndrome.
erinaceieuropae is a rare species of tapeworm that spends part of its
life in amphibians and crustaceans before moving on to cats and dogs in the
final part of its life cycle.
considered an accidental host for this worm species and while living in a
person, the parasite will not reach maturity. S. erinaceieuropae
infections – known as sparganosis – are most likely to be imported from
areas like China.
Some of us may
have heard of the recent
case of a British man who had headaches, seizures and memory loss for four
years, which later was found to be caused by S. erinaceieuropae. This
parasite has been reported
only 300 times worldwide in the last half century and had never been seen
in the UK before that case.
acquired by drinking water containing infected crustaceans, by ingesting raw
infected reptiles or frogs or by using a raw
frog poultice to cure sore eyes. Spirometra infections are
characterised by the appearance of large nodules below the skin and swelling
of the muscles which control eye movement. Infection can also involve the
brain and spinal cord. Diagnosis
of infection is achieved by biopsy of the lesion, imaging and diagnostic
brain infections are not common they do occur and pose great diagnostic and
therapeutic challenges. Diseases caused by them should not be regarded as
neglected or exotic, because human cases have recently reported and in
countries with a high standard of comprehensive health and medical services.
Understanding host-parasite interaction is a fundamental step in the
development interventions and treatments for these parasitic horrors.
was originally published on The
Conversation. Read the original
article. Hany Elsheikha is Associate Professor of Parasitology at
University of Nottingham. Image by DiscoveryTV
under Creative Commons license.
Worms "N" Us: A look at 8 parasitic worms
that live in humans
Take a trip through Scientific American's Worm Gallery and meet the
charming, slinky creatures that turn your innards into their home sweet home
PEEP THE PINWORM
Pinworm is the most ubiquitous parasitic worm infecting people
in temperate climates—places like the U.S., Europe and most of
China, which are neither tropical nor polar, but have four
People accidentally ingest immature worms by eating raw or
undercooked pork. Once the worms pass into the intestines, they
latch onto the intestinal walls with suckers and hooks and begin
to grow—and grow.....
Beware of undercooked pork chops, tenderloin and sausages. If
pork is your pleasure, make sure you cook it through to 170
degrees Fahrenheit (77 degrees Celsius); that should be enough to
scorch any Trichinella larvae that may be hiding within.....
People develop schistosomiasis , or infections with
schistosomes, by swimming in or touching water containing infected
snails that release the larvae into the water. (The snails become
infected in the first place because people with the disease
urinate or defecate in the water .) The larvae penetrate a
person's skin and journey through the bloodstream where they grow
into adult worms measuring up to 0.6 inch (15 millimeters)
YIKES, LYMPHATIC FILARIAE
Unlike most parasitic worms, which inhabit the intestines,
lymphatic filariae live in the lymphatic vessels and nodes. For
reasons not completely understood by scientists, the presence of
these worms in the lymph system can lead to severe inflammation
called elephantiasis , which often affects the legs, arms,
genitals and breasts [ see photo ].....
WHOA, A WHIPWORM
Trichuris trichiura , commonly known as a whipworm because it
looks like a cow whip, grows up to about two inches (50
millimeters, or as long as a thumb). The most common way to catch
whipworm is by ingesting dirt containing human feces that are
loaded with its eggs (think: children playing in the dirt and then
putting their fingers in their mouths).....
BEHOLD THE LARGE ROUNDWORM (Ascaris)
Ascariasis, the potentially deadly disease caused by the
roundworm Ascaris , is the most common worm infection in humans,
affecting as many as 1.5 billion people worldwide annually and
striking hardest in tropical and subtropical regions with poor
sanitation, according to the U.S.....
HOOKWORM HEAD SHOT
Unlike most parasitic worms, which invade the body through the
stomach , hookworm larvae can wiggle in through sweat glands or
hair follicles in the skin. This typically happens when people
walk, sit or lie on dirt containing human feces contaminated by
PARASITE FACTS AND FIGURES
There are four classifications of parasites. 30%
live in our digestive systems while the other 70% live all over our bodies
including, the blood, and all organs including the brain and even in our eyes
and sinus cavities. There are over 1,000 types of parasites in these four
classes that can live in the human body.
BACTERIA, VIRUSES and FUNGUS (mold, yeasts) are ALL in the very broad parasite
70% of all parasites that can live in the human body are
MICROSCOPIC - only 30% are visible to the naked eye.
Malaria is a microscopic infection. The "worm" parasites can range
from ¼ inch to 33 feet long!
Ringworm, tapeworms, pinworms,
candida albicans (yeast infections) and plasmodia (which is the malaria causing
parasite), roundworms including ascaris, hookworms, whipworms, flukes including
the blood fluke the anisakid worm and microscopic parasites and all parasitic
larvae and eggs.
All microscopic protoza (including blastocystis hominis ) , tuberculosis
(Mycobacterium tuberculosis), cholera, scabies, viruses, bacteria and fungi
including, pseudomonas aeruginosa, all species of shigella, staph (staph aureus)
and strep (Streptococcus), bacteria, fungal infections (ie: yeast infections),
threadworms and skin parasites (including scabies).
Cryptococcus neoformans, Aspergillus, Saprolegnia, and Zygorhynchus species.
Salmonella typhimurium, and other bacterial species (including sixty + types of
fungi and twenty + types of bacteria, including some of the most potent viruses
known to man), B. subtilis, P. mirabilis, Salmonella typhi,
methicillin-resistant Staph aureus, Staph faecalis, salmonella enteritidis, and
V. cholerae , Escherichia, Proteus, Providencia, Citrobacter, Klebsiella,
Hafnia, Aeromonas, Vibrio and Bacillus genera, Microsporum, Epidermophyton,
Trichophyton, Rhodotorula, Torulopsis, Trichosporon, Cryptococcus neoformans,
Entamoeba histolytica and Paramecium caudatum, the herpes simplex virus, and
Also cystitis, prostatitis, gonorrhea, and syphilis, cholera, giardia,
salmonella, and Eschorichia Coli.
The following is a partial list from each of the four
groups which will give you the general idea about how different parasites wreak
havoc on our bodies.
PROTOZA (ONE CELL PARASITES)
Most parasites are ONE CELL PROTOZOA and they can invade ANY
single cell in our bodies. Protozoa reproduce and multiply by duplicating
themselves like a bacteria or virus.
TRICHOMONAS – lives in the female vagina and urethra
and causes a slightly yellow discharge with itching and burning. It also lives
in the prostate of men.
NERVOUS SYSTEM PROTOZA:
NAEGLERIA - this one is found in water and soil, but only one
species - naegleria fowleri - can infect humans. The infection mimics bacterial
meningitis and affects the brain and spinal cord. The parasite enters the body
through underwater swimming and/or diving - the ameba then travels to the brain
and spinal cord. Infection causes Primary Amebic Meningoencephalitis (PAM), a
brain inflammation, which leads to the destruction of brain tissue. Initial
symptoms of PAM include headache, fever, nausea, vomiting and stiff neck.
Further destruction of brain tissue leads to confusion, lack of attention, loss
of balance and body control, seizures, hallucinations. This disease progresses
very rapidly and usually results in death in 3-7 days. This one is not common -
only 24 reported cases in the United States between 1989 and 2000 - but it is
caused from fresh water such as lakes, streams and hot springs - especially
during dry summer months when the water levels are low and the temperature is
above 80 degrees. It also comes from under-chlorinated swimming pools.
MALARIA – this is a blood parasite transmitted by mosquitoes that
affects red blood cells.
BLASTOCYSTIS HOMINIS - this is a very common microscopic
parasitic organism that is found throughout the world. Infection is called
blastocystosis or blasto. Symptoms include loose stools, diarrhea, abdominal
pain, anal itching, weight loss and excessive gas. They can remain in the
intestines for weeks, months and YEARS. It is unknown at this time how blasto is
GIARDIA LAMBIA - They live in drinking water and are not
affected by chlorine because of their hard outer shell. They cause severe
stomach infections that are routinely misdiagnosed as the stomach flu, the
stomach bug or a stomach virus with severe diarrhea and abdominal pain. The
infection also causes gas and greasy stools that tend to float, fatigue, nausea,
weight loss and dehydration. It is estimated that 50% of drinking water in the
United States has the Giardia Lambia present. The symptoms show 1-2 weeks after
infection and can last for 2-6 weeks. A giardia infection is very contagious.
CRYPTOSPORIDIUM – this parasite comes from run off
water from cattle farms. The infection is called Cryptosporidiosis - also known
as crypto. This parasite is protected by an outer shell that allows it to
survive outside the body for long periods of time. This shell also makes it
resistant to disinfectants. They are ideal carriers for many of our autoimmune
diseases. During the past 2 decades, crypto has become recognized as one of the
most common causes of waterborne disease within humans in the United States. It
may be found in drinking water and recreational water in EVERY REGION of the
United States AND throughout the WORLD. The most common symptom of
cryptosporidiosis is watery diarrhea. Other symptoms include dehydration, weight
loss, stomach cramps and/or pain, fever, nausea and vomiting. Symptoms show 2-10
days after becoming infected and can last for 1-2 weeks.
AMERICAN TRYPANOSOMIASIS - also called Chagas Disease is
an infection caused by the parasite Trypanosoma cruzi. Worldwide, it is
estimated that 16-18 million people are infected - of those, 50,000 will die
each year. 20%-30% of infected people will develop the most severe symptoms TEN
to FORTY YEARS after the initial infection. These symptoms include cardiac
problems ,swollen esophagus and/or swollen large bowel.
TUBERCULOSIS- this parasite lives in the white blood
cells and kills over 3 million people per year.
LYMPHATIC FILARIASIS-this disease is caused by
microscopic, thread-like worms. The adult worms only live in the human lymph
system. The human lymph system maintains the body's fluid balance and fights
infections. An adult worm lives for 5-7 years - when the adults mate, millions
of microscopic eggs are passed onto the blood. Symptoms are not usually felt
until after the adult worms die - because the lymph system is infected, fluid
collects and causes swelling in the arms, legs and breasts. In men, the genital
area also becomes swollen. Also, the swelling and decreased function of the
lymph system makes it difficult for the body to fight off infections - so people
with this parasite will have more bacterial infections.
PFISTERIA – come from undercooked or raw fish (sushi)
E COLI – this one comes from contaminated meat that is
not fully cooked.
LEISHMANIASIS - from sand flies, this parasite infects
the skin and causes skin sores and can cause internal damage to the spleen,
liver and the bone marrow. The skin sores are called cutaneous leishmaniasis -
they can change in shape and size over time. They look sort of like a volcano
with a raised edge and central crater. Sometimes scabs form - and the sores can
be painless OR painful. Some people have swollen glands near the sores. Internal
leishmaniasis is called visceral leishmaniasis and is marked by fever, weight
loss, an enlarged spleen and liver and swollen glands. New cases of cutaneous
leishmaniasis number 1.5 BILLION per year worldwide while the visceral
leishmaniasis new yearly cases number 500,000. Infection can last for years and
it only takes one bite from a sand fly to obtain the initial parasite.
LISTERIA – from chicken
TRICHINELLA – from pork
SPIROCHETE – this parasite is carried by lice, ticks,
fleas, mites and flying biting insects who all transmit them to humans. They
cause relapsing fever, jaundice, Lyme disease, Vincent angina and Wyles disease.
ENTAMOEBA HISTOLYTICA – this is the most pathogenic
amoeba for humans. It comes from contaminated water and foodstuffs and is spread
through the anal – oral route. The infection causes bloody stools, diarrhea,
and abdominal pain. They also affect the lungs and the brain. It usually takes
1-4 weeks for symptoms to show after becoming infected. The symptoms include
loose stools, stomach pain and stomach cramping.
BALANTINIUM COLI – this comes from water that is
contaminated with pig feces, such as pig farm run off water. This parasite stays
in the intestinal mucous and causes diarrhea.
ACANTHAMOEBA - can enter the skin through a cut, wound,
or through the nostrils. Once inside the body, amebas can travel to the lungs
and through the bloodstream to other parts of the body, especially the central
nervous system (brain and spinal cord).
CYCLOSPORIASIS - First case reported in 1979 - it is now
found worldwide. Symptoms include watery, explosive diarrhea, loss of appetite,
weight loss, bloating, gas, cramps, nausea, vomiting, muscle aches, low-grade
fever and fatigue. Symptoms show about one week after becoming infected and can
last for days to months in cycles.
DIENTAMOEBA FRAGILIS - this parasite lives in the large
intestines - it is found worldwide. Symptoms include diarrhea, stomach pain and
cramping, loss of appetite, weight loss, nausea and fatigue. This parasite
infection stays in the large intestine - it does not spread to other parts of
THE NEMATODES (ROUNDWORMS)
These are what most people think of when it comes to human
parasites. They are the pinworms, the whipworms, and the hookworms. They are of
course bigger than the one-celled protozoa, but they are all round and small and
can cause a staggering amount of damage. It is a big misconception that we
actually eat worms to become infected – we actually ingest the microscopic
eggs which then hatch in our bodies.
PINWORMS – the #1 parasite in the North America and
Europe. They cause an itchy anus, digestive problems, irritability and insomnia.
They are the most readily seen of all of the species of parasites because they
live in the colon and they come out at night to lay their eggs in the anus and
on bedclothes. The adults are white and ½ inch long. The eggs can become
airborne and are able to live without host for 2 days. They are also transmitted
by the anus – hand – mouth route. School age children followed by
preschoolers have the highest infestation rates. If one member of a family has
pinworms, it is highly likely that all members are infected. Children in day
care centers and institutional settings are also at high risk for infestation
from other children. If a child scratches, then touches something, the
microscopic eggs are easily left for another child to put into their mouth.
HOOKWORMS – are also called “Necator Americanus”
which means the American Murderer. They come from contaminated food and water.
The eggs hatch in the intestines then migrate to the lungs through the
bloodstream where they are coughed up and swallowed. They then travel back to
the small intestine to reproduce. In the lungs they can cause pneumonia . In the
intestines they hook themselves into the intestinal walls where each one drinks
up to 1cc of blood per day causing bleeding and tissue death, not to mention
anemia weakness. Hookworms from dogs and cats penetrate human skin and stay
there causing skin problems and rashes including edema. (We get these from pets
licking us or us petting or grooming them.) Hookworms also cause asthma, eye
pain, insomnia, and dry skin and hair. Itching and a rash at the site of where
skin touched soil or sand is usually the first sign of infection. These symptoms
occur when the larvae penetrate the skin. While a light infection may cause no
symptoms, heavy infection can cause anemia, abdominal pain, diarrhea, loss of
appetite, and weight loss. Heavy, chronic infections can cause stunted growth
and mental development.
WHIPWORMS – attach themselves to the intestinal wall where they inject their
digestive fluid into the tissue which then turns into a liquid. They then suck
up this liquid. This causes anemia, bloody stools, lower abdominal pain, weight
loss and nausea. Each female can lay 10,000 eggs per day and each adult can live
for several years. When the eggs are passed out through your feces (unseen) they
are able to live for three weeks without a host. If you touch an object (public
shopping cart, salt shaker, doorknob, etc.) that has an egg on it, then put your
finger in your mouth – you are infected.
ASCARIS - is a round worm that lives in the small
intestine. Adult female worms can grow to over 12 inches in length - adult males
are smaller. Ascariasis is the most common human worm infection - children are
infected more often than adults. Most people have no symptoms that are
noticeable, but infection in children may cause slower growth and slower weight
gain. If you are heavily infected, you may have abdominal pain. Sometimes, while
the immature worms migrate through the lungs, you may cough and have difficulty
breathing. If you have a very heavy worm infection, your intestines may become
blocked. You may cough up an ascaris larvae or pass an adult worm in your stool.
Ascaris eggs are found in human feces. After feces contaminates the soil, the
eggs become infectious after a few weeks. Infection occurs when a person
accidentally ingests (swallows) infectious microscopic Ascaris eggs. Once in the
stomach, immature worms hatch from the eggs. The larvae are carried through the
lungs and then to the throat where they are swallowed. Once swallowed, they
reach the intestines and develop into adult worms. Adult female worms lay eggs
that are then passed in feces; this cycle will take between 2-3 months.
BAYLISASCARIS - this roundworm infects raccoons and
other animals including humans. The eggs can live in the soil for YEARS. Humans
become infected when they accidentally ingest the microscopic eggs from water,
soil or other objects. The eggs hatch into larvae which travel through the body
affecting organs and muscles. The symptoms - which can take a week or more to
show - include nausea, fatigue, liver enlargement, loss of coordination and loss
of muscle control. Severe cases can cause blindness and coma.
SCHISTOSOMIASIS - this infection comes from contaminated
fresh water. Days after infection, itchy skin or a rash develops - after 1-2
months, fever, chills, cough and muscle aches set in. The body reacts to the
eggs produced by these worms, not the worms themselves. The eggs can be found in
the brain, spinal cord and can cause seizures, spinal cord inflammation and
paralysis. The parasite can damage the liver, intestines, lungs and bladder.
STRONGYLOIDES STERCORALIS – this is the most unusual
of all of the parasites known to man. They can live with or without a host. The
females can reproduce without a male. They infect the skin, then the eggs
migrate to the lungs where once hatched, they are coughed up and swallowed by
the host. They travel just under the skin until they grow too big. They then
settle into the small intestine where they mature and reproduce and the cycle
starts all over again.
THE TREMATODES (FLUKES)
The flukes are the hardest parasites to get rid of as they can stay
in the human body for 10-20 years with each adult fluke living for one year.
Flukes come from raw fish, undercooked water plants (such as watercress) and are
also carried by dogs, cats and other fish-eating animals. They are also found in
beef, chicken, pork and unwashed vegetables.
LIVER FLUKES- infect billary ducts and gall bladders.
They start out as small white flattish worms - wider on one end and more narrow
on the other. The young adults are various shades of pink while the older adults
are bright red to almost black in color. The longer they live in the liver - the
darker in color they become because the blood from the liver stains their skin.
LUNG FLUKES – are found in the lungs and are sometimes
mistaken for lung cancer on x-rays. They cause cough, blood tinged mucous, and
vague chest pains.
BLOOD FLUKES - travel all over the human body and into
all organs including the brain and spinal cord. They can cause seizures and they
destroy red blood cells.
THE CESTODES (TAPEWORMS)
Most tapeworms are ½ inch long and are a grayish white color, but there are
some species that can grow to 33 feet long and can lay over 1 million eggs per
day. Tapeworm bodies are mostly reproductive organs. Their head hooks into the
intestinal wall, the length of their bodies is made up of sections that are
nothing but ovaries and testes for reproduction and their “tails” release
these eggs. These eggs hatch into larvae that can migrate to other parts of the
human body and can form cysts. Even if the sections are broken off, the tapeworm
can regenerate itself from only it’s head. Some tapeworms can live for over 25
PORK TAPEWORMS - are carried by undercooked pork or by
the anus-hand-mouth route. They can incubate in the human body for up to 30
years before reproducing. They can affect the eyes and the brain. The infection
is called CYSTICERCOSIS. When the cysticerci are found in the brain, the
condition is called neurocysticercosis. Once inside the body, the tapeworm egg
hatches, penetrates the intestine, travels through the bloodstream and may
develop into cysticerci in the muscles, brain or eyes. Signs and symptoms of
infection will depend on how many there are and where in the body they are
located. You may feel lumps in the muscles, under the skin. They may float in
the eyes causing blurry or disturbed vision. They can also cause swelling of the
eyes. In the brain, they cause headaches and seizures - they also cause
confusion, lack of attention, balance difficulties and swelling of the brain
(hydrocephalus). Heavy infections can cause sudden death.
FISH TAPEWORM – this is the largest of the species, it
can grow to 33 feet in length. It causes anemia, water retention and weight gain
as it makes the host uncontrollably hungry.
DOG TAPEWORMS – are passed along to us from cats and
dogs through petting and grooming. It is called DIPYLIDIUM CANINUM - it is found
throughout the world. The adult tapeworm is made up of many small segments - the
tapeworm itself can measure 4-28 inches long - each segment is about the size of
a grain of rice. As the adult tapeworms matures inside the intestines, these
segments break off and pass in the stool (the segments look like grains of rice
or corn kernals or peanuts - are hard and are a white/slightly yellowish color).
These segments are about 2mm long and are what contains the tapeworm eggs.
Alveolar Echinococcosis - AE disease results from being
infected with the larval stage of Echinococcus multilocularis, a microscopic
tapeworm (1-4 millimeters) found in foxes, coyotes, dogs, and cats. Although
human cases are rare, infection in humans causes parasitic tumors to form in the
liver, and, less commonly, the lungs, brain, and other organs. If left
untreated, infection with AE can be fatal. AE is caused by tumor-like or
cyst-like tapeworm larvae growing in the body. AE usually involves the liver,
but can spread to other organs of the body. Because the cysts are slow-growing,
infection with AE may not produce any symptoms for many years. Pain or
discomfort in the upper abdominal region, weakness, and weight loss may occur as
a result of the growing cysts. Symptoms may mimic those of liver cancer and
cirrhosis of the liver.
Please read the following - it is IMPORTANT information about a new
American Epidemic called Morgellons Disease - It's a parasite infection that
causes "fibers" to come out of skin lesions - the fibers themselves
are alive - MANY people with Morgellons are being told that it is "all in
their heads". This has gotten quite a bit of national press lately and we
have been flooded with questions and concerns. Here is an informative report:
The Following Six Signs or Symptoms Are The Basis of Morgellons Disease
1. Skin lesions, both spontaneously appearing and self-generated, with intense
itching. The former may initially appear as “urticarial-like”, or as
“pimple-like” with or without a white center. The latter appear as linear or
“picking” excoriations. Even when not self-generated, lesions often progress
to open wounds that heal abnormally and usually incompletely. (e.g., heal very
slowly with discolored epidermis or seal over with a thick gelatinous outer
2. Crawling sensations, both within and on the skin surface. Often
conceptualized by the patient as “bugs moving, stinging or biting”
intermittently. Besides the general dermis, may also involve the scalp, nares,
ear canal, and body hair or hair follicles. The sensations are at times related
to the presence of easily seen insects, arthropods, and other human and
non-human associated parasites that require serious attention from the observing
3. Fatigue significant enough to interfere with the activities for daily living.
4. Cognitive difficulties, including measurable short term memory and attention
deficit, as well as difficulty processing thoughts correctly. Described by
patients as "brain fog".
5. Behavioral effects are common in many patients. Many have been or will be
diagnosed as Attention Deficit Disorder, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity
Disorder, Bipolar Disorder, or Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. A minority do not
show this pattern. Almost all, if previously seen by well-read physicians
without prolonged observation, will have been labeled as “Delusional
Parasitosis”. Temporal relationship to skin lesion onset is not known.
6.“Fibers” are reported in and on skin lesions. They are generally described
by patients as white, but clinicians also report seeing blue, green, red, and
black fibers, that fluoresce when viewed under ultraviolet light (Wood's lamp).
Objects described as “granules”, similar in size and shape to sand grains,
can occasionally be removed from either broken or intact skin by physicians, but
are commonly reported by patients. Patients report seeing black “specks” or
“dots” on or in their skin, as well as unusual 1-3 mm “fuzzballs” both
in their lesions and on (or falling from) intact skin.
OTHER COMMONLY REPORTED SYMPTOMS AND SIGNS
1. Change in visual acuity.
2. Numerous neurological findings. A variety of neurological symptoms have been
reported. Some patients have been diagnosed with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis,
Multiple Sclerosis, and other well-known and recognized disorders, while others
display significant symptoms not falling into any well-defined neurological
3. Gastrointestinal symptoms, which may include dyspepsia, gastroesophageal
reflux, and/or changes in bowel habits often similar to Irritable Bowel
4. Neuropsychiatric symptoms and signs, ranging from mood or personality changes
to diagnosed disorders including Attention Deficit Disorder, Bipolar Disorder,
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and occasionally frank psychosis. Temporal
relationship to skin lesion onset is not known
5. Acute changes in skin texture and pigment. The skin is variously thickened
and thinned, with an irregular texture and irregular hyperpigmentation pattern.
The changes resemble age associated sun-exposure skin damage, but typically
6. Skin examination often reveals excoriated and/or crusted lesions which, on
examination with lighted magnification, are seen to have inclusions of variously
colored (white, blue, black, or red) fibers. Skin examination may also reveal
multiple hyper-pigmented macules, and an increase of what appears to be villous
hair on arms and face.
7. Arthralgias are reported by many patients.
8. Associated diagnoses which have been commonly reported in this patient
population include Borreliosis (better known as Lyme Disease), Fibromyalgia, and
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.
OTHER COMMONLY REPORTED OBSERVATIONS
1. Most patients will have sought care from multiple medical care providers. A
large number will have been diagnosed with Delusional Parasitosis likely because
of the juxtaposition of unexplained skin lesions and sensations and psychiatric
overlay. Unfortunately, almost none will have received an appropriate diagnostic
physical examination (particularly a microscopic or biopsy examination of
lesions), but will have been diagnosed by history alone with grossly incomplete
2. Most of these patients feel abandoned by the traditional medical care system
and have sought alternative care providers or have self medicated, seriously
compounding an already difficult medical situation
LABORATORY AND OTHER DIAGNOSTIC EVALUATION To date, there have been no formal
laboratory or imaging studies done in this patient group. There are some
reasonably consistent clinical findings, however, that need further examination,
in controlled studies, to be corroborated or refuted.
Pictures of Parasites
WARNING: GRAPHIC !
in Honduras removed a 2 centimeter long botfly
larva from a child's eye socket.
Only one bot fly species attacks
humans, the Dermatobia hominis.
From Wikipedia: Botflies deposit
eggs in a host body, or sometimes use an intermediate
vector: common houseflies for example.
Eggs are deposited in animal skin
directly, or the larvae drop from the egg: the body heat
of the animal induces hatching upon contact.
Some forms of botfly also reside
in the digestive tract when consumed by a licking
Myiasis can be caused by larvae
burrowing into the skin (or tissue lining) of the host
animal. Mature larvae drop from the host and complete
the pupal stage in soil.
ascaris infection with worms exiting through
mouth and nose. Anesthesia appears to agitate the worms
and when there is infection of adults in the lungs they
can exit the mouth and nose. The normal life cycle of
ascaris is to migrate to the lungs for the larval stage
and grow to an adult in the intestines, but sometimes
the adults reside in the lungs.
Ascaris eggs are found in human feces. After
feces contaminates the soil, the eggs become infectious
after a few weeks. Infection occurs when a person
accidentally ingests (swallows) infectious Ascaris
eggs. Once in the stomach, immature worms hatch from the
eggs. The larvae are carried through the lungs and then
to the throat where they are swallowed. Once swallowed,
they reach the intestines and develop into adult worms.
Adult female worms lay eggs that are then passed in
feces; this cycle will take between 2-3 months.
Pigs can be infected with another species of Ascaris.
Occasionally, a pig Ascaris infection can be
spread to humans; this occurs when infective eggs, found
in the soil and manure, are ingested. Infection is more
likely if pig feces is used as fertilizer in the garden;
crops then become contaminated with Ascaris
You or your children can become infected after
touching your mouth with your hands that have become
contaminated with eggs from soil or other contaminated
surfaces or by ingesting contaminated food or water.
two pictures have floated around the internet with
the explanation that it was of an avid sushi eater who
got some infestation which infected his brain. When he
went to the doctor complaining of headaches, he was sent
for surgery and this is what
was found. Some tellings of the story report that it is
a form of tapeworm with many eggs, and others that
maggots somehow got under his scalp and ate his brain.
However, the actual story is that it was a man in his
70s who was suffering from an unusual form of cancer
which had eaten away at the upper portion of his skull
and scalp but had not caused him any pain so he had not
sought medical help. He was involved in a minor auto
accident and the paramedics found him in this condition.
There was no explanation as to whether a minor accident
had caused the damage and dislodged fragile tissue or if
the scalp had already been eaten away. There were indeed
many insects and maggots infesting his brain.
Onchocerciasis is the world's second leading
infectious cause of blindness. Rarely
life-threatening, the disease causes chronic suffering
and severe disability. In Africa, it constitutes a
serious obstacle to socioeconomic development. It is
often called river blindness because of its most extreme
manifestation and because the blackflies that transmit
the disease abound in riverside areas, where they breed
in fast-flowing waters. Fertile riverine areas are
frequently abandoned for fear of the disease.
The disease is caused by Onchocerca
volvulus. It is mostly found in Africa but
also a few countries in Latin America. A parasitic worm,
Onchocerca volvulus, of the family
filariidae, lives in the human body for up to 14 years.
Rarely life-threatening, the disease causes chronic
suffering and severe disability. The male is 2-3 cm long
and the female is up to 60 cm long. The vector for this
parasite is the blackfly.
Adult worms remain in subcutaneous nodules, limiting
access to the host's immune system. Microfilariae, in
contrast, are able to induce intense inflammatory
responses, especially upon their death. Dying
microfilariae have been recently discovered to release
Wolbachia-derived antigens, triggering innate immune
responses and producing the inflammation and its
associated morbidity. Wolbachia species have been found
to be endosymbionts of O. Volvulus adults and
microfilariae and are thought to be the driving force
behind most of O. Volvulus morbidity. Severity of
illness is directly proportional to the number of
microfilariae and the power of the resultant
Guinea Worms. First swallowed by a
"Cyclops" or water flea, the Guinea worm
transforms into a third stage larvae. The Cyclops,
ingested by a human being, are consumed by the stomach's
juices and the larvae of the Guinea Worm are released.
They remain in the stomach for up to three months. After
mating, the male dies and the female bores through the
body making her way to the extremities, usually the
lower leg or foot, but she can go to any part of the
body. Once settled, just under the skin, she begins to
grow, by eating the flesh of her carrier, into a three
foot long worm. This worm is about as big around as a
piece of spaghetti. While growing, she causes severe
pain and cripples the carrier, so that they are not able
to work. These are simple subsistence farmers. Pain
hinders their farming, causing them to survive on less
and keeps their family from eating!
As the worm matures, a painful blister appears on the
skin of the carrier. When the person puts the affected
part of the body in water, the blister breaks and
hundreds of thousands of tiny first stage larvae are
released into the water. The adult female worm then
comes slowly out of the body of its carrier through the
sore made by the broken blister. It usually takes
several weeks for the worm to completely exit the body.
People, having no choice, drink the infested water,
ingest the worm and the entire cycle begins once again.
No matter how often people are infected they do not
become immune to the Guinea Worm. Both young and old
alike are subject to this dreaded parasite.
Demodex folliculorum, or the
demodicid also known as the eyelash mite,
is a tiny mite, less than 0.4 mm long, that lives in
pores and hair follicles, usually on the nose, forehead,
cheek, and chin, and often in the roots of eyelashes. (A
follicle is the pore from which a hair grows). It is not
really a parasite since it lives on dead skin cells and
secretions, but overgrowth of them can cause irritation.
have a wormlike appearance, with legs that are mere
stumps. People with oily skin, or those who use
cosmetics heavily and don't wash thoroughly, have the
heaviest infestations ... but most adults carry a few
demodicids. Inflammation and infection often result when
large numbers of these mites congregate in a single
The mites live head-down in a follicle, feeding on
secretions and dead skin debris. At the left, you can
see seven demodicids buried in the follicle of a hair,
and you can also see the hair's shaft. If too many mites
have buried into the same follicle, it may cause the
eyelash to fall out easily.
An individual female may lay up to 25 eggs in a
single follicle, and as the mites grow, they become
tightly packed. When mature, the mites leave the
follicle, mate, and find a new follicle in which to lay
their eggs. The whole cycle takes between 14 to 18 days.
Sometimes demodex is called the 'face mite', since it
is often associated with blackheads, acne and other skin
(although it is not the cause of these). Demodex are
harmless and don't transmit diseases, but large numbers
of demodex mites may cause itching and skin disorders,
referred to as Demodicosis.
The mites have tiny claws, and needlelike mouthparts
for eating skin cells. Their bodies are layered with
scales, which help them anchor themselves in the
follicle. The mite's digestive system results in so
little waste that, unlike the dust mite, this mite
doesn't even have an excretory opening. So although
there may be mites in your eyelashes, there isn't any
mite poop! Thank goodness!
However ... did you know that you go to sleep at
night on a pillow that is home to many thousands of dust
mites ...which help keep our homes clean by consuming
the tens of millions of skin cells we shed each day?
Just pretend they're not there!
There are numerous species of tapeworm,
which may be as long as 50 ft. (15 m). Their bodies are
made up of segments called proglottids, which contain
male and female sexual organs and which house their
break off, usually into the feces of the host, thus
enabling the spread of the tapeworm. One variety,
Dipylidium caninum (cucumber tapeworm), uses dogs or
cats as a definitive host, entering the body when the
animal ingests a flea or louse, which serves as an intermediate
host. Several varieties of worm can enter the body
through improperly cooked pork. This is a testament to
the wisdom of the injunctions against eating pork in the
Old Testament and Koran, which were written for peoples
in a world without refrigeration or sophisticated
The Taenia genus of tapeworm includes T. solium, the
pork tapeworm, which has been known to crawl out of the
anus of an infected human. Another worm often found in
under-cooked pork is Trichinella spiralis, which brings
about the condition known as trichinosis. The latter
disease is rarely fatal, but it can cause extreme
discomfort, characterized by sore, tender muscles.
Thanks to enhanced efforts at meat inspection, the
incidence of trichinosis in U.S. pigs has dropped to
less than 1%. Nonetheless, it is still quite possible to
ingest the parasite from eating undercooked game,
Cymothoa exigua. As a youngster, this nasty
little parasitic crustacean begins a life of terror by
fighting its way through the gills of its fish host of
choice, the snapper. Once there, it attaches itself to
the fish’s tongue and begins feeding on the rich blood
pumping through the artery underneath. As the parasite
grows, it drinks more blood and eventually causes the
tongue to atrophy and disintegrate. But does the
Cymothoa mouth-squatter leave its fishy friend
tongueless? Of course not. It does what any crafty
parasite would do and replaces the old tongue with its
own body. The fish is actually able to use the parasite
just like a normal tongue, only it has to share all the
food with its new friend. Yes, the whole foster-tongue
thing seems like a pretty nice gesture on the part of
Cymothoa - until you remember there was nothing wrong
with the fish’s old tongue in the first place.
screwworm is a type of fly but the larva
growing from the eggs is what causes problems in humans
and animals. It is likely that many of the
"maggots" in the brain picture above are
screwworm larvae. From Neatorama::
The screwworm isn’t really a worm at all; it’s a
type of fly. But if living under a false name were the
worst of the screwworm’s misdeeds, you can be sure it
wouldn’t appear in this story. No, this parasite’s
rap sheet is about to get much, much more disturbing. To
find its host, an adult female screwworm seeks out
exposed flesh on an animal
(usually some sort of livestock, but an injured soldier
or a human baby isn’t out of the question) in search
of a place to lay her eggs. She prefers wounds, but may
also settle on using the eyes, nostrils, or anus of her
victim to construct a nursery. Next, the 200-or-so eggs
hatch, and the larvae start burrowing into their
host’s flesh. Once they’re situated in their cozy
little meat tunnels, the infant flies continue to feed
and grow. The bigger they get, the more they have to
eat. Eventually, this creates a whole lot of festering
and oozing on the host, which attracts more flies, which
lay more eggs, which do more feeding and burrowing.
It’s a brutal onslaught, and a swift one. Screwworm
larvae are reportedly capable of consuming an entire
sheep or dog from the inside out in five to seven days.
Florida Fish and Wildlife Research Institute - Imagine
a day fishing out on the water and everything seemed
great. A legal limit of good-sized fish has
been caught, plenty for a tasty dinner upon returning
home. But while filleting one of the fish, there are
spots found in the muscle, or even visible worms. What
is one to do, cut out those areas and continue to cook
and enjoy the fish for dinner, or throw it away?
Although these parasites may not look very appetizing,
worms are commonly found in marine fish and are rarely
passed from fish to humans. It is safe to cut away the
affected area and continue to cook the fish as usual.
Even if parasites are present cooking kills them and
they are not a risk to public health.
Grouper fillet with parasite
Seatrout fillet with parasite
Grouper ovary with red nematodes
Parasites are organisms that live on or within
another organism, called the “host.” Most fish
species are susceptible to worm infestations but a few
species, particularly those in sharks and fishes in the
grouper, amberjack, and drum families, appear to be more
susceptible to them. Larger, older fish can acquire many
parasites over the course of their lives. Though they
appear to be very intrusive, parasites rarely cause
health complications for the fish. Although most
commonly seen by anglers in the muscle, parasitic worms
can live in every organ. For example the ovary of this
grouper is inhabited by large, red nematodes or
In general, parasite density and diversity can be
good indicators of the overall health of a marine
environment. Fish possessing a high diversity of species
of parasites in relatively low abundances are commonly
found in healthy marine systems.
Also see the article Fish
or Lymphatic Filariasis, is a rare disorder of the
lymphatic system caused by parasitic worms such as
Wuchereria bancrofti, Brugia malayi, and B. timori, all
of which are transmitted by mosquitos. Inflammation of
the lymphatic vessels causes extreme enlargement of the
affected area, most commonly a limb or parts of the head
and torso. It occurs most commonly in tropical regions
and particularly in parts of Africa.
Lymphatic filariasis is a parasitic disease caused by
microscopic, thread-like worms. The adult worms only
live in the human lymph system. The lymph system
maintains the body's fluid balance and fights
infections. Lymphatic filariasis is spread from person
to person by mosquitoes.
People with the disease can suffer from lymphedema
and elephantiasis and in men, swelling of the scrotum,
called hydrocele. Lymphatic filariasis is a leading
cause of permanent disability worldwide. Communities
frequently shun and reject women and men disfigured by
the disease. Affected people frequently are unable to
work because of their disability, and this harms their
families and their communities.
Info.net : Cutaneous leishmaniasis
has many local synonym such as Tropical sore, Oriental
sore, Aleppo sore or Baghdad sore. The disease is caused
by Leishmania tropica protozoa, which is endemic in Asia
minor, Southwest Asia, the Mediterranean and gulf
regions.The Phlebotomus sand fly is the vector,
transmitting the disease from the reservoirs to human
being. Direct infection from infected sores to a
traumatized skin may rarely cause the disease .
Children are more susceptible, where
solid immunity is acquired after the first infestation.
This is why some natives sometimes inoculate their
children with the protozoa on the shoulder or thighs to
have the disease there in order to protect the face from
scarring if they are infested in the future with
disease has a very chronic course. The incubation period
may take from weeks to two months from the beginning of
the sand fly bite. Leishmaniasis usually affects
children more than other age groups where the face,
extremities and the neck are the most common sites
Picture at left: Surrounded by the forest-like hairs
of her victim, a sand fly delivers what could be a
parasite-carrying bite that causes leishmaniasis. Fall
is peak sand fly season in Iraq, where service members
who do not follow protective measures could be at risk
for the disease. In 2002 and 2003, 73 service members
were diagnosed with the cutaneous (skin) version of the
disease. All but two spent time in Iraq.
ascaris infection in child shown at right. A
large bolus of worms was expelled following
antihelminthic treatment. This is one of the best-known
photographs showing severe roundworm infection.
Ascaris is a worm that lives in the small
intestine. Infection with Ascaris is called
ascariasis (ass-kuh-rye-uh-sis). Adult female worms can
grow over 12 inches in length, adult males are smaller.
Ascariasis is the most common human worm infection.
Infection occurs worldwide and is most common in
tropical and subtropical areas where sanitation and
hygiene are poor. Children are infected more often than
adults. In the United States, infection is rare, but
most common in rural areas of the southeast.
Most people have no symptoms that are noticeable, but
infection may cause slower growth and slower weight
gain. If you are heavily infected, you may have
abdominal pain. Sometimes, while the immature worms
migrate through the lungs, you may cough and have
difficulty breathing. If you have a very heavy worm
infection, your intestines may become blocked.
eggs are found in human feces. After feces contaminates
the soil, the eggs become infectious after a few weeks.
Infection occurs when a person accidentally ingests
(swallows) infectious Ascaris eggs. Once in the
stomach, immature worms hatch from the eggs. The larvae
are carried through the lungs and then to the throat
where they are swallowed. Once swallowed, they reach the
intestines and develop into adult worms. Adult female
worms lay eggs that are then passed in feces; this cycle
will take between 2-3 months.
Pigs can be infected with another species of Ascaris.
Occasionally, a pig Ascaris infection can be
spread to humans; this occurs when infective eggs, found
in the soil and manure, are ingested. Infection is more
likely if pig feces is used as fertilizer in the garden;
crops then become contaminated with Ascaris
You or your children can become infected after
touching your mouth with your hands that have become
contaminated with eggs from soil or other contaminated
surfaces or by ingesting contaminated food or water.
of Sparganosis mansoni, a tapeworm larva, from
eye. Adult tapeworms can reach lengths of 100cm or 40
inches. After penetrating the mucosa lining of the small
intestine, they migrate systemically throughout the
body, invading a variety of tissues and organs, and can
live for years.
|Comments on video of ascaris
removal from duodenum: This 34 year old female
resident of rural China presented with nausea and
vomiting, vague abdominal pain and fever. An upper
endoscopy was performed in Beijing. As the endoscope is
advanced to the second portion of the duodenum (the
duodenum is the start of the small intestine which is
attached to the stomach), a live Ascaris was
encountered. Ascaris infections occur worldwide, with
current estimates suggesting that 1.4 billion people may
be infected with this parasite. The roundworm is
retrieved using a biliary basket. Once the worm is
secured in the basket, both worm and endoscope were
removed from the patient. Notice here the length of the
organism, about 20cm in total, and the continued
movement even after it is removed.
Comments on video of removal of anisakis
simplex seen during endoscopy: This 61 year old
restaurant owner was referred for upper endoscopy to
evaluate typical longstanding dyspepsia and reflux type
symptoms. His upper endoscopy appeared quite normal
except for what initially appeared to be a wisp of mucin
floating in the gastric fundus. On closer inspection,
this worm like structure was seen and identified as the
marine parasite anisakis simplex which is the cause of
life cycle of Anisakis starts when eggs produced by
adult females are passed in the feces of infected marine
mammals. They hatch and molt through several larval
stages before being consumed by crustaceans, their first
host. Following further maturation, the larva become
infective to fish and squid when consumed. Once in
marine hosts such as tuna or cod, the larva are
infective when consumed by either marine mammals or
If the host dies, the larva migrate to the muscle
tissues where through predation, they will pass onto
another host. If instead they are consumed by marine
mammals, they will mature in the host's intestine to
shed eggs as adults. Humans become incidental hosts when
they consume raw fish often in the form of sushi. The
larvae hook into the gastric or intestinal wall and can
cause a significant localized reaction and in some case
peripheral eosinophilia. Most often, the clinical course
following ingestion is asymptomatic: the larva briefly
anchoring to the gastric or intestinal wall before dying
and passing uneventfully. Larva have been reported to
penetrate the mucosa and cause abdominal pain and
vomiting. Small bowel lesions mimicking Crohn's disease
have been noted. When seen endoscopically, removal as
demonstrated in this case is curative. Generally,
medical therapy is not necessary, but limited experience
with albendazole has been reported.
Comments on video of ascaris seen during
colonoscopy: On screening colonoscopy, this
abnormality was encountered in the cecum. This round
worm is Ascaris Lumbricoides, one of the most common
human parasites in the world.
When ingested, the durable Ascaris eggs hatch in the
small intestine releasing larva that migrate through the
intestinal wall, and travel both hematogenously and
lymphatically to the heart and lungs. Over the next
several days, the larva mature in the alveoli, then
migrate up the trachea to be swallowed back into the
These larva will then mature in the small bowel; adults
couples will succeed in producing an extraordinary
number of eggs, over 200,000 ova per day. The adults
live one to two years.
The majority of Ascaris infections are as in this
example asymptomatic. Symptoms are a consequence of
either the immunologic hypersensitivity of the host to
the worm as in the pulmonary stage referred as Loffler's
syndrome or to mechanical obstruction of lumen by the
worm. Heavy worm burden can result in intestinal
obstruction and migrating worms can cause pancreatitis
and/or cholangitis when involving the pancreatobiliary
Multiple medical therapies are approved for its
treatment including mebendazole.
Epidemiologically, infections are most common in
areas of lower socio-economic conditions. This man
manages a pig farm in China that is used to test
pharmaceutical agents. From an endoscopic standpoint it
is noteworthy that the worms do not like light and will
move away fro the attention it is receiving. In this
example, the endoscopist was too slow to snare his prey
which succeeded in escaping temporarily into the cooler
and darker confines of the small bowel out of reach of
the endoscope but not from the soon to be consumed
Comments on video of pinworm seen during
colonoscopy: This 52 year old woman was
referred for screening
colonoscopy. Her exam was normal except for this
finding. This is Enterobius vermicularis or pinworm and
is most frequently seen in young children. Probably the
most common parasitic infection in the US, humans are
the only host in their life cycle. Eggs laid at the anal
verge, are detectable by the "scotch tape".
The adult female seen here range from 8-20mm in length.
A single dose of Mebendazole 100 mg PO repeated in 1-2
weeks is effective in eradication.
Antiparasitic General Regimen is an article in the
Roundworms, the Silent Killers is a humorous short
video done by Michael Deash, Mike Baker, and Josh
Clarke. Well, actually it is pretty dumb but then
there's not much other parasitic roundworm humor out
Talks About Worms is a "serious" but
unintentionally funny video of a gravelly-voiced frog
puppet named Ro-Revus explaining intestinal worms. This
video from 1971 was produced by The Malnutrition and
Parasite Project of the Univerisity of South Carolina
and funded by the Office of Economic Opportunity.
colonscopy video of a large pinworm infection.
and Parasites is an article in Electroherbalism's
CDC Parasitology website has some good jpg pictures
in the "Identification and Diagnosis of Parasites
of Public Concern" section. They include for many
parasites diagnostic findings with microscopy *and* for
some of the larger bugs, macroscopy, which is what they
look like in their "natural" state instead of
mounted and dyed like most parasite pics are. They also
have a great section on "Morphologic comparisons of
intestinal parasites" for help in diagnosing
parasites from stool samples.
Image Library . Provides multiple views plus
pictures of life cycles for many parasites.
Diagnostics, formerly known as The Great Smokies
Diagnostic Laboratory, now known as Geneva
Diagnostics, was the first large conventional lab
diagnostic testing facility in the US to recognize the
significance of pathogens like yeast and parasites and
is still the most renowned. They also do metabolic
Alive! is a site dealing mostly with microscopic
pathogens and explains in a simple way some aspects of
cell biology plus includes many videos of the processes.
It has a short pictorial article on how a virus
(bacteriaphage) can infect bacteria (e. coli) and
immunology topics like allergies, how mites cause
itching, antibody production, and even the anatomy of a
Manifestations of Medical Helminthes explains
parasites which are of dermatological interests since
they are associated with visible symptoms of the skin.
This is a chapter from Principles
of Pediatric Dermatology, an illustrated online book
which contains much valuable information on many types
of dermatitis, skin infections, and other dermatological
Other Articles of Interest....
How to Detect and Treat a Parasitic Infection. Ninety percent (90%) of the world population is infected with one or more parasites in their body, being able to coexist in the same host with up to five different types. The danger comes when the balance is upset, within the host, skyrocketing the number of parasites and the host starting to show signs of serious illness and even death in some cases.
Photos and Effects of Deadly Parasites. I typically see parasites causing more constipation in patients than diarrhea, but some parasites are capable of changing the fluid balance in your gut and causing diarrhea. Trouble sleeping, skin irritations, mood changes, and muscle pain can all be caused by the toxins that parasites release into the bloodstream. These toxins often cause anxiety, which can manifest itself in different ways. For instance, waking up in the middle of the night or grinding your teeth in your sleep are signs that your body is experiencing anxiety while you rest. When these toxins interact with your neurotransmitters or blood cells, they can cause mood swings or skin irritation.
How Your Cat Is Making You Crazy. The parasite, which is excreted by cats in their feces, is called Toxoplasma gondii (T. gondii or Toxo for short) and is the microbe that causes toxoplasmosis - the reason pregnant women are told to avoid cats' litter boxes.
Master Index of Health-Related Articles on BSI.International