Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

Overview Symptoms

Echinococcus Overview

What is echinococcus?
A person with echinococcus has a rare tapeworm infection caused by the Echinococcus granulosus or Echinococcus multilocularis worm that causes cysts in the body. Echinococcus is common in Africa, Central Asia, South America, the Mediterranean, and the Middle East. It is very rare infection in the United States. Infection occurs following the ingestion of contaminated food. The infection most commonly causes the formation of cysts in the liver, but they may also form in the brain, bones, lungs, muscles, kidneys, and spleen.

What are the symptoms of echinococcus?
Symptoms of echinococcus include upper right abdominal pain, chest pain, severe skin itching, cough, fever and bloody sputum.

How does the doctor treat echinococcus?
Treatment of echinococcus includes medications, for up to 3 months. Surgery may be required to remove the cysts.

Continue to Echinococcus Symptoms

Last Updated: Sep 21, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Echinococcus 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]
  5. Youn H. Review of zoonotic parasites in medical and veterinary fields in the Republic of Korea. Korean J Parasitol. 2009 Oct;47 Suppl:S133-41. [19885329]
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