The simplest helminths (worms) in humans

Today, diseases caused by many types of protozoa and helminths are widespread. The danger of such ailments is explained not only by complications and malfunctions in the body, to which protozoa and worms lead in humans, but also by the complexity of diagnosing the disease due to the similarity of symptomswith various non-parasitic conditions.

Helminths and protozoa cause:

  • malfunctions of the gastrointestinal tract (constipation, diarrhea, vomiting);
  • allergic skin reactions;
  • general intoxication of the body;
  • muscle and joint pain;
  • dehydration.

In order to avoid misdiagnosis and the appointment of improper treatment, which at best will simply be ineffective, and at worst can lead to complications, it is necessary to accurately determine the type of helminths and thedegree of infection of the body with them.

Ways of infection by protozoan helminths

human parasites protozoa

All worms enter the body from the outside. The same is true for the simplest helminths. In the environment, they live in the ground, water bodies. In addition to unwashed hands, by eating poor-quality products, you can become infected with them at home, through contact with a carrier.

The main mechanism of any infection is most often oral-fecal, that is, a person simply swallows the eggs of the worm with food, water, less often some helminthic infestations occur whenthey are bitten by infected insects.

The simplest worms that live in humans belong to the class of single-celled organisms. The infection is called protozoan. Depending on the type and degree of invasion, the course of the disease can be severe, even leading to the death of the patient.

What helminths are called protozoa?

The simplest helminths can have a body of constant shape (ciliates and flagellates), and variable - a bright representative of the amoeba. Their dimensions are very small and range from 4-5 micrometers to 1-3 millimeters. Often the cell of these microorganisms has several nuclei. Pseudopodia, cilia, and flagella act as organs of locomotion. The process of reproduction, depending on the species, occurs by splitting in two or by a complex sexual method.

To protect against adverse external conditions, as well as for further spread, the simplest helminths can turn into cysts, which are cells covered with a protective membrane. This allows them to go from an immobile cyst to an active state if they enter a favorable environment.

There are frequent situations when the carrier's body does not notice even the simplest helminths parasitizing it. In other cases, the invasion results in the death of the host. For example, some species of African antelope are permanent "masters" of trypanosomatids. And a human bite from the tsetse fly, which carries these helminths, can infect them and cause sleeping sickness, which is known to be fatal.

The most studied protozoan helminths

Parasites of the human body belonging to the class of flagellates:

parasitic protozoan giardia
  1. Giardia is a parasite that usually lives in the intestines, bile ducts, liver of vertebrates (humans and animals). They can be transmitted through food, water and other factors. This group of protozoa is the cause of such a disease as giardiasis - a functional disorder of the gastrointestinal tract, namely the small intestine. Many patients infected with Giardia have no obvious symptoms.
  2. Leishmanias are the simplest helminths carried by mosquitoes. After being bitten by insects, a person is more susceptible to contracting leishmaniasis. Signs of the disease are damage to the skin, mucous membranes and some internal organs, often fever and anemia become signs of the disease.
  3. Trypanosomatids are protozoa transmitted by insects. When infected, they cause trypanosomiasis. This disease has a long course. Depending on the type of trypanosomatids, various systems and organs are affected.
  4. Amoebic dysentery parasitizes the intestines. The invasion is carried out in the form of a 4-nucleus cyst. Although the dysenteric amoeba is present almost everywhere, the most frequent cases of infection are recorded in tropical countries. Amoeba is the cause of an infectious protozoan disease in humans such as amoebiasis. The clinical picture of the disease is ulcerative colitis, characterized by relapses and exacerbations. There are also cases of extraintestinal amoebiasis - these protozoan helminths pass from the intestines to other organs and even to the skin. The last form of the disease is called amoebiasis of the skin - on the buttocks and in the perineum there are obvious ulcerative-necrotic signs.
  5. Trichomonas cause trichomoniasis. Currently, several subspecies of Trichomonas have been studied. Intestinal, the parasitism zone of which is in the large intestine, and helminths do not cause much damage to the intestines. The zone of parasitism of genitourinary Trichomonads, as evidenced by its name - the genitourinary system. The infection is carried out sexually. This subspecies of protozoa is the cause of a disease such as trichomoniasis. This infectious disease is manifested by inflammation of the genitourinary system. Oral Trichomonas parasite in the oral cavity, does not pose a danger to humans.

The sporophyte species of protozoa is represented by the plasmodium and coccidia of malaria:

  1. Malaric Plasmodium, transmitted by mosquitoes and responsible for malaria, is the simplest micro-organism. It parasitizes in the blood. Malaria in a person infected with this parasite is manifested by the following symptoms: hypochromic anemia, bouts of fever, enlargement of organs such as the liver and spleen.
  2. Coccidia are protozoa that live in the intestinal epithelial tissue of many animals. A number of species of coccidia are the causative agents of a disease such as coccidiosis. In humans, this disease is manifested by mild intoxication and the phenomena of gastroenteritis or enteritis.

Ciliates: balantidia. This detachment of protozoa living in the large intestine is the cause of a disease such as infuser dysentery (balantidiasis).

Diagnosis and treatment of protozoan helminths

Very often, when the presence of helminths in the body occurs without symptoms, the disease is not diagnosed for a long time. The invasion can be suspected by specific symptoms and can only be detected using laboratory tests on feces, urine, blood and fluids obtained by puncture of various organs and systems.

In medical practice, there are general principles for the treatment of protozoan invasion:

  • antiparasitic drugs;
  • nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs;
  • drugs for detoxification;
  • with the manifestation of secondary bacterial infection, narrowly targeted antibiotics.

Specific treatment is prescribed by a doctor, depending on the type of protozoan helminths and the degree of invasion.