Parasites in the human body: symptoms, signs and treatment

Parasites are organisms that exist at the expense of the host. Their vital activity in the human body can be asymptomatic. Therefore, helminthic infection is one of the most rarely diagnosed pathologies.

parasites in the human body

Parasitic diseases have serious consequences. According to the World Health Organization, they cause the death of 16 million people worldwide. In order to immediately recognize the parasite and prevent complications, you need to know the possible routes of infection and the symptoms.

How dangerous are parasites?

Parasites can live both in the body and inside a person. Some types are not dangerous, while others pose a serious threat to life. The waste materials of helminths are toxic. If the accumulation is high, the body becomes poisoned.

Symptoms of parasite poisoning:

  • vomit;
  • weakness;
  • loss of appetite;
  • high body temperature;
  • fever;
  • convulsions.

Treatment must be started in time, because the neglected condition can be fatal.

The consequences of parasite infection can vary depending on the location of the parasite. Worms can cause an allergic reaction, blindness, paralysis, destroy the liver, lungs, brain, and affect the functioning of other organs. They reduce immunity, which makes a person more susceptible to infectious diseases.

The most dangerous parasites are:

  • Brain amoeba (tapeworm). It lives in the brain and has an expected lifespan of up to 20 years. As the tapeworm grows, it tends to kill its host. Death occurs in 97% of cases. The worm causes swelling of the brain, and infection can be caused by eating contaminated meat or water.
  • Roundworms. Ringworms, which are often found in the child's body. Adult individuals grow to 30 cm in length. Symptoms of general poisoning appear, and you can get infected with dirty hands.
  • Onchocercavolvulus. A worm that causes river blindness (onchocerciasis).
  • Tryponasoma. It causes chronic heart and intestinal diseases.
  • Australian tick. It causes a severe allergic reaction, leading to respiratory failure.

General symptoms

The most common signs of the presence of parasites are allergic manifestations in the form of hives, skin itching, rashes, fever and bronchial asthma attacks.

General symptoms of parasitosis in the body:

  • nausea, vomiting;
  • stomach ache;
  • bowel dysfunction (diarrhea or constipation);
  • itching in the anus;
  • teeth grinding during sleep;
  • loss of appetite;
  • headache;
  • weakness, fatigue;
  • avitaminosis;
  • reduced immunity;
  • anemia;
  • cough;
  • joint or muscle pain;
  • a sharp decrease or increase in body weight.

Symptoms may not appear immediately. For example, clinical signs of infection with pinworms appear after 2-3 days, and for roundworms after 3 months.

Types of parasites

types of parasites

Parasites can live anywhere in the human body. They are usually found in the intestines and liver, but can be found in the lungs, muscle tissue, blood, blood vessels, and brain. If the larva enters the bloodstream, it can attach to any internal organ, disrupting its function.

What parasites live in the human body? There are more than 250 species that can subsist on humans. Their size varies from microscopic to meters, and their number can also vary.

The main types of parasites found in humans can be distinguished:

  • ectoparasites;
  • helminths;
  • protozoans (protozoans).


This species lives on the skin. Representatives of ectoparasites:

  • head, pubic and body lice - pediculosis;
  • bed bug - a carrier of infectious diseases such as hepatitis, tuberculosis, typhus;
  • demodex - demodicosis;
  • scabies mite - scabies;
  • cochlioma - cochliomiasis.

Infection with parasites occurs through contact and household contact. They are spread through skin contact, personal hygiene items and clothing. Cochliomiasis occurs when flies are infected, which are common in North and Central America.

Protozoan parasites

These include the following parasites:

  • in the intestines - amoebas, lamblia, leishmania, blastocysts, balanditia;
  • in the blood - trypanosomes, babesia;
  • in the urinary system – Trichomonas;
  • in internal organs (heart, lungs, liver, brain) - toxoplasma, trypanosomes, acanthamoeba.

Infection occurs through food, water, sexual contact (in the case of Trichomonas).


These are worms that disrupt the functioning of internal organs and metabolism during their life activity. Worms can be only a few centimeters long, or they can reach 7-10 meters.

In case of primary infection, they settle in the intestines, and in case of repeated infection, they can also affect other organs and muscles. The most common worms are those that live in the rectum, liver, bile ducts and lungs.

The most common diseases caused by helminth parasites:

  • Ascariasis. The larvae pass through the digestive system and settle in the intestines. An adult reaches 25-30 cm.
  • Opisthorchiasis. Adults infect the bile ducts and enter the human body together with infected fish.
  • Cestodosis. The infection caused by tapeworms in humans occurs through meat and fish and affects the intestines.
  • Schistosomiasis. It is caused by goitre or flatworms. Infection occurs when water contaminated with freshwater snails comes into contact with the skin.

This species contains a large number of subspecies. In total, more than 300 species of worms have been registered.

They can be classified into 3 groups:

  • nematodes - roundworms;
  • trematodes - flukes;
  • cestodes are tapeworms.


what do nematodes look like

The most significant representatives of cylindrical worms:

  • pinworms;
  • roundworms;
  • whipworms.

The main ways of helminth infection are eating dirty food or contaminated water, unwashed hands and insect bites. Nematodes settle in the gastrointestinal tract, less often in the liver, lungs and heart.

The main symptoms of the presence of parasites in the human intestine:

  • nausea, vomiting;
  • itching in the anus;
  • skin rashes;
  • indigestion;
  • chronic fatigue.

If the population is high, the parasites will naturally leave the body. In this case, the nematodes are found in the feces.


It can lead to the development of dangerous infectious diseases. Depending on their habitat, these parasites can be classified into the following groups:

  • leprosy - schistosomes;
  • liver flukes - liver flukes;
  • intestinal villi;
  • pancreatic parasites;
  • pneumonia.

Symptoms of infection depend on the organ affected. This may include weakness, dizziness, loss of appetite, nausea, abnormal bowel movements, pale skin, irritability or apathy.

The main source of infection is the feces of sick animals or people entering water and soil.


Tapeworms live in the intestines. They enter the human body when eating insufficiently thermally processed meat and fish. The biggest danger is the pig tapeworm, which can migrate into the bloodstream, muscle tissue and brain.

Cestodes can parasitize the body for a long time without obvious signs, growing to impressive sizes. The length of an adult person reaches 10 meters, common diseases caused by cestodes are avitellinosis and echinococcosis.

Common representatives of cestodes:

  • tapeworm;
  • cattle and pig tapeworm;
  • lamb brain;
  • echinococcus.

Which doctor should I consult if I suspect parasites?

Parasitic diseases are treated by parasitologists. If an infection is suspected, they should be contacted. A dermatologist can also detect parasites on the skin.


The diagnosis of parasitic worms is carried out by laboratory examination of the stool. It is necessary to test three times to identify the worms.

Pinworm parasites are identified by scraping with duct tape. Organs not involved in digestion can be checked for parasites with a blood test or biopsy.


You can cleanse the human body of parasites with the help of medicines and folk remedies. The duration of treatment depends on the degree of infection and the degree of poisoning of the body.

Medicinal treatment of parasites

Treatment of helminthiasis involves the use of anthelmintics. They are toxic, so they should not be used without a confirmed diagnosis.

The symptoms of helminthiasis can be alleviated with symptomatic treatment. Vitamin preparations, choleretic agents, hepatoprotectors, laxatives, anti-allergic agents, antibiotics and probiotics are used.

Corticosteroids are prescribed for severe allergic reactions.

Conventional treatment of parasites

You can get rid of parasites in the human body with the help of the following traditional medicine:

  • Enema with cranberry juice. It helps to get rid of helminths and protozoa. 2 tablespoons are needed for 2 liters of water. l. cranberry juice and 1 tbsp. l. salt. Do the procedure 2 times a day.
  • Garlic enema. This is how you can get rid of intestinal parasites - boil 6 cloves of garlic in 1 liter of milk, cool and make an enema.
  • Pumpkin seeds. Peeled seeds (300 g) should be crushed, add a little water and add 100 g of honey. Eat at the same time as a laxative.
  • Onion infusion. Cut a large onion into small pieces, pour boiling water over it and let it stand for 12 hours. Drink 100 g 3-4 times a day.

To remove parasites from the stomach and intestines, one must eat spicy food. By consuming garlic, onions, hot spices and herbs, we can easily get rid of dumplings, for example.


Parasites have a negative effect on the human body. If helminthiasis is not treated, serious complications occur:

  • frequent acute respiratory viral infections, enlarged adenoids and tonsils;
  • appendicitis;
  • enteritis, gastroenteritis, enterocolitis;
  • cirrhosis;
  • liver cancer;
  • anemia;
  • gastrointestinal bleeding;
  • pancreatitis;
  • bronchitis;
  • oncological diseases;
  • brain edema;
  • purulent-septic lesions.

The vital activity of the parasites leads to peritonitis in the stomach and pneumonia in the lungs. Roundworms block airways and bile ducts, causing suffocation or intestinal obstruction.


Preventive measures against parasite infection:

  • wash hands before eating and after going outside;
  • consume only washed vegetables and fruits, boiled water;
  • store food in accordance with health regulations, avoid contact with flies;
  • eat meat and fish only after heat treatment;
  • do not swim in polluted waters;
  • do not use other people's personal hygiene products;
  • deworm pets.

Although worms pose a threat to human health and life, cleaning the body should only be done after the parasites have been detected and under the supervision of a doctor. Timely diagnosis of helminthiasis helps to avoid serious complications. It is important to take preventive measures, especially for children.

F. A. Q

What symptoms may indicate the presence of parasites in the human body?

Some common symptoms of parasitic infections may include fatigue, weakness, weight loss, abdominal pain, stomach upset, allergic reactions, and changes in appetite and sleep.

What signs can indicate the presence of parasites in the human body?

Signs of parasites in the body may include the presence of parasites in the stool, blood tests, and symptoms of specific parasitic infections such as malaria, trichinosis, and others.

How to treat parasites in the human body?

Treatment of parasites in the human body may include taking anti-parasitic drugs under medical supervision, as well as hygiene and preventive measures to prevent reinfection.

Useful tips

Tip #1

Pay attention to symptoms such as constant fatigue, loss of appetite, abdominal pain, weight changes, allergic reactions - these can be signs of the presence of parasites in the body.

Tip #2

Do a special examination with a doctor to identify parasites. This may include stool, blood, urinalysis, ultrasound and other diagnostic methods.

Tip #3

When treating parasites, consult your doctor for appropriate medications and diet and lifestyle recommendations.