Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Beef Tapeworm Types

Types of tapeworm infections include:

Beef tapeworm
  • The beef tapeworm is names Taenia saginata.
  • The infection is common in Africa, the Middle East, Eastern Europe, Mexico, and South America.
  • Infection is uncommon in the US.
  • Infections are caused by:
    • Failure of the meat inspection process
    • Eating uncooked meat

Pork tapeworm
  • The pork tapeworm is named Taenia solium.
  • Taenia solium is common in Asia, Russia, Eastern Europe, and Latin America.
  • Infection with the pork tapeworm is a leading cause of seizures worldwide.
  • Infection is rare in the US.
  • May cause cysticercosis, a condition where there is an accumulation of cysts in the body.

Fish tapeworm
  • The fish tapeworm is named Diphyllobothriasis.
  • It the largest of the human tapeworms, reaching a length of up to 33 feet.
  • Infection is caused by eating raw or undercooked freshwater fish, such as pike and perch.

Last Updated: Jan 5, 2011 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Beef Tapeworm References
  1. Flisser A, Vazquez-Mendoza A, Martinez-Ocana J, Gomez-Colin E, Leyva RS, Medina-Santillan R. Short report: evaluation of a self-detection tool for tapeworm carriers for use in public health. Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2005 May;72(5):510-2. [15891122]
  2. Garcia HH, Del Brutto OH, Nash TE, White AC Jr, Tsang VC, Gilman RH. New concepts in the diagnosis and management of neurocysticercosis (Taenia solium). Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2005 Jan;72(1):3-9. [15728858]
  3. Garcia HH, Gonzalez AE, Gilman RH; Cysticerosis Working Group in Peru. Diagnosis, treatment and control of Taenia solium cysticercosis. Curr Opin Infect Dis. 2003 Oct;16(5):411-9. [14501993]
  4. Salinas R, Prasad K. Drugs for treating neurocysticercosis (tapeworm infection of the brain). Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2000;(2):CD000215. [10796510]
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