Tapeworm As Seen During Colonoscopy

Posted by Karen Buckley • March 18th, 2010

In this Image in Clinical Medicine, a colonoscopy of a 46-year-old woman revealed a long, moving tapeworm located in the terminal ileum extending to the sigmoid colon. Diphyllobothrium Latum is a fish tapeworm that occurs in humans via consumption of undercooked or raw fish. View the video and see more Images in Clinical Medicine at NEJM.org.

4 Responses to “Tapeworm As Seen During Colonoscopy”

  1. This is a terrific image from a gastroenterologist’s perspective.

    But I’m not sure how my mom would feel about seeing it, particularly now in the days just before Passover. She, like others preparing traditional Gifilte fish for the holiday, might not appreciate such a graphic reminder of the attendant risks in tasting raw whitefish or carp.

    On the other hand, there’s a potential public health benefit in disseminating pictures like this. As happens with most medical information, there are people who’d want to learn more, and others who’d prefer not knowing.

  2. Thomas Gerke, M.D. says:

    WOW!!! this is the fish tapeworm that we all learned about in med school..part of the differential of B12 deficiency..usually seen in SCANDANAVIANS…

  3. The Pseudophyllid cestode, native to scandinavia and baltics, infects fish and mammals was imaged outstandingly. Sensitive diagnosis is usually made by identifying proglottid segments or characteristic eggs in the feces by restriction fragment length polymorphism across the genus or by Polymerase Chain Reaction. A single dose of Praziquantel, 5-10 mg/kg PO once for both adults and children is the standard treatment for diphyllobothriasis.

  4. prem raj pushpakaran, MS, PhD says:

    Pseudophyllid cestode that parasites fish and mammals are imaged wonderfully!!
    Though a native of western europe, it is now distributed globally. The life cycle of this tapeworm runs between the definitive host (mammals) and the intermediary host (crustaceans & pisces). Molecular tools like: RFLP and PCR could be used for the diagnosis and a single dose of Praziquantel, 5-10 mg/kg PO once for both adults and children is administered for the control of diphyllobothriasis.

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