Cysticercosis is an ailment that springs from the larvae of a tapeworm that can enter the system of the patient who may have consumed infected faecal matter or pork that is infected. This parasite is a flat and segmented one that ends up causing damage to the intestine of the patient. The symptoms include constipation or obstruction, loose motions, weight loss, and even anaemia.
HOW IS CYSTICERCOSIS DIAGNOSED?
The traditional method of demonstrating either tapeworm eggs or proglottids in stool samples diagnoses only taeniasis, carriage of the tapeworm stage of the life cycle. Only a small minority of patients with cysticercosis will harbour a tapeworm, rendering stool studies ineffective for diagnosis. Ophthalmic cysticercosis can be diagnosed by visualizing parasite in the eye by funduscopic. In cases of human cysticercosis, diagnosis is a sensitive problem and requires biopsy of the infected tissue or sophisticated instruments. Taenia solium eggs and proglottids found in feces, ELISA or polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis diagnose only taeniasis and not cysticercosis. Radiological tests, such as X-ray, CT scans which demonstrate ""ring-enhancing brain lesions"", and MRIs, can also be used to detect diseases. X-rays are used to identify calcified larvae in the subcutaneous and muscle tissues, and CT scans and MRIs are used to find lesions in the brain.
HOW IS CYSTICERCOSIS TREATED?
Treatment depends on individual’s symptoms. Common treatment methods are administering anthelmintic agents, corticosteroids, anticonvulsant medication, and surgery.
DID YOU KNOW?
Cysticercosis can be prevented by administering appropriate vaccines