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A roundworm infection? – Ascariasis Symptoms Checker

 

Ascariasis is a disease due to an infection by a parasite called Ascaris lumbricoides. It is the most common infection of the large parasites (helminths), with approximately 800 million cases worldwide.

Helminth is a general term doctors use to describe worms or, more specifically, parasites that look like a worm. Several types of helminths exist; their classification goes according to their external shape and where they live when infecting the body. There are trematodes, cestodes, and nematodes (roundworms).

Roundworms got their name due to their characteristically cylindrical shape. The estimation is that nematodes or roundworms infect the gut of approximately one-third of the global population. Many diseases, because of them exist, such as trichuriasis or enterobiasis. Still, the roundworm Ascaris lumbricoides is the commonest of them all when it comes to causing infections.

A great proportion of people with ascariasis will remain without symptoms. However, it is also possible for them to develop lung symptoms or potentially life-threatening gastrointestinal complications.

This disease spreads through the parasite’s eggs in human feces. Hence, it is not odd to find a high number of cases in places where personal hygiene or overall sanitation measures are not adequate. This includes places where human feces are used as fertilizer, contaminating food. Although it is also possible for the egg to infect the soil and that people manipulating it and contaminating their hands can acquire the infection later on by ingesting eggs.

Similarly, it is also possible to get ascariasis by an Ascaris that infects pigs (Ascaris suum). So, people in direct contact with pigs or using raw pig feces as manure are at higher risk of infecting themselves.

Ascariasis is more common in children; when they have the infection, they are more likely to develop symptoms than adults. Therefore, in areas lacking the necessary sanitation measures, this infection could cause important complications in the long run to children, such as malnutrition, anemia, and/or growth and mental development problems.

The tool is an Ascariasis Symptoms Checker. It gathers the most important signs, symptoms, and risk factors for this disease.

Thankfully, with the right treatment, more than nine of every ten patients will cure the infection after just a single dose. It is possible to say that treating this disease is very straightforward and effective with several drugs. People with ascariasis generally have excellent outcomes.

The problem exists when patients have an infection with a large number of worms. In this latter situation is where symptoms and complications could arise more easily, like intestinal obstruction. Besides, people can acquire the infection again after a successful treatment if they do not take the necessary prevention measures.

The tool gathers questions that aim to identify ascariasis symptoms or very high risk for developing it. Therefore, the tool will tell anybody who uses it the likelihood of their symptoms because of ascariasis. It could also result in positive if someone has several risk factors for it.

Keep in mind that most often than not, this disease produces no symptoms. The tool does not replace a doctor’s assessment or the necessary exams as a stool examination for diagnosing the disease. Accordingly, this tool would only talk about a higher likelihood of having symptoms because of ascariasis or an overall higher risk of infection without symptoms. Using the tool is free and would only take a few minutes.

  • Question of

    Do you have ten or fewer years old?

    • Yes
    • No
  • Question of

    Did you return from travel overseas within the last fourteen days? (Click yes if it was a tropical or developing country, such as in tropical and subtropical areas of Asia, sub-Saharan Africa, or the Americas)

    • Yes
    • No
  • Question of

    Did you travel overseas within the last two years? (Click yes if it was a tropical or developing country, such as in tropical and subtropical areas of Asia, sub-Saharan Africa, or the Americas)

    • Yes
    • No
  • Question of

    Do you or anyone in your household has been diagnosed with ascariasis?

    • Yes
    • No
  • Question of

    Do you or anyone in your household has been diagnosed in the past with another nematode (roundworm), such as trichuriasis or hookworm?

    • Yes
    • No
  • Question of

    Do you live in what is considered a rural area?

    • Yes
    • No
  • Question of

    Are you a recent migrant in the United States? (Click yes if you have less than two years in the country)

    • Yes
    • No
  • Question of

    Does the patient into question run barefoot outside the house, eats without washing hands, eats soil, or eats unwashed fruits or vegetables?

    • Yes
    • No
  • Question of

    Do you work in an environment where you have a direct relation with pigs or their feces?

    • Yes
    • No
  • Question of

    Do you use raw pig manure as fertilizer?

    • Yes
    • No
  • Question of

    Did you develop a cough, shortness of breath, hives, chest pain, and wheezing (breathing with an audible wheeze) in less than fourteen days after consuming food prepared with uncertain sanitation measures either in the US or abroad? Or while traveling abroad in a developing country for at least two weeks? [Please click yes if you had three or more of these symptoms (You can also click yes if this is happening right now)]

    • Yes
    • No
  • Question of

    Do you have abdominal pain that comes and go, bloating, nausea (feeling like throwing up), and loose stools that come and go from two months after consuming food with unclear sanitation measures o while traveling abroad in a developing country?

    • Yes
    • No
  • Question of

    Do you have a yellow coloration of the white part of the eyes, nausea and vomiting, fever, and severe abdominal pain, from two months or more after consuming food with questionable sanitation measures o while traveling abroad in a developing country?

    • Yes
    • No
  • Question of

    Does the child in question has lost weight or not gained sufficient weight after traveling overseas to a developing country and/or eating food with inappropriate sanitation measures within two years?

    • Yes
    • No
  • Question of

    Does the child in question has become paler and tired after traveling overseas to a developing country and/or eating food with inappropriate sanitation measures within two years?

    • Yes
    • No

Written by Dr. Esteban Kosak

Doctor of Medicine - MD Recently Graduated from Medical School and inspired to aid the global population during this situation. I think that we shall no longer be waiting to see a doctor when we feel sick. Several times we feel disease searches in Google drive us to a rabbit hole and come out thinking that we may die of cancer or something very serious, given that symptoms may seem to fit a wide variety of illnesses. Since I recently graduated from medical school. I have all the medical information fresh in my mind. My thorough experience as an expert researcher allows me to very-well known the different diseases and conditions that affect human bodies. Empowered by the United Nations 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SGDs). I think that we all can provide a grain of sand to help humanity. That's why we created Symptoms.Care a place where you can come and screen your symptoms and find what different illnesses can be related to them. Armed with the right information you can instantly, discretely, secure and from the comfort of your home talk with a Doctor that can Evaluate your Symptoms and help you seek the right treatment.

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