Parasite analysis

Parasite analysis is the most reliable way to determine the presence of uninvited guests in the body. Currently, the diagnosis can be made by blood or stool analysis. So, today we are going to talk about how to check for parasites.

blood test for parasites

Danger of parasites

Parasites are organisms that use a person as a source of food and a place to live, localizing in the gastrointestinal tract, lungs, muscles, joints

If the number and size of parasites are small, their presence can go unnoticed for a long time, but accelerated reproduction or growth of parasites, their movement through the body during the life cycle is often the cause of serious health problems.

For example, roundworms that have accumulated in the intestines can cause constipation and obstruction. Bull tapeworm grows up to several meters in length and seriously damages the digestive tract, depriving the host of nutrients and vitamins. Echinococcus creates cysts in internal organs, including the brain, liver and lungs. The rupture of such a cyst can occur unexpectedly, after a minor injury, or during an examination. The contents of the cyst may cause anaphylactic shock or collapse. Trichinella larvae feed and live in muscles, gradually destroying them. According to the WHO, parasitic diseases cause about 14 million deaths worldwide each year.

Blood test for parasites

Parasite testing is a must for everyone. Even if the person does not suspect the presence of worms in the body and has never complained of symptoms indicating the presence of helminths. According to the WHO, up to 100 million people are infected with protozoa each year. During their lifetime, almost all people living on our planet have encountered parasitic infestations.

Parasites are organisms that use a person as a source of food and a place to live, localizing in the gastrointestinal tract, lungs, muscles, joints. They can also live in the blood and even affect the eyes and brain. They can be unicellular, multicellular and protozoan (bacteria and viruses).

The most common ways of infection:

  • Parasite eggs enter the human digestive tract together with poorly washed vegetables and fruits, insufficiently cooked meat and fish dishes, through water of poor quality, if sanitary and hygienic rules are not followed. As practice shows, on the bread, which lies on the shelf in the store, you can sometimes find the eggs of several species of parasites. Also, some species are transmitted along with fur products (echinococcosis);
  • inhalation, movement through the skin;
  • insect bites (for example, mosquitoes transmit malaria);
  • in contact with sick people - for example, with scabies.

Indications for analysis

A blood test for parasites is recommended for both adults and children. Recognizing the presence of unwanted "inhabitants" in the body only on the basis of symptoms is very difficult, and sometimes impossible. This is due to the fact that the symptoms of the disease in most cases do not differ in specificity.

Protozoa and organisms affect a person, causing allergic manifestations, pain in the gastrointestinal tract, lethargy and weakness. As a result, you can visit an allergist for years and treat bloating and heaviness in the abdomen, not realizing that worms are to blame for health problems.

In children, helminths can cause a delay in mental and physical development, as well as reduce resistance to infectious and somatic diseases. Very often the whole family suffers, constantly infecting each other. Therefore, if there is the slightest doubt, it is necessary to do tests.

One of the most informative tests is a blood test. This study identifies specific substances that indicate the presence of invasions.

What tests are needed to detect parasites

Detecting the presence of helminths in the body allows the study of blood and feces. Parasites that live in the intestines reproduce with the help of eggs or whole compartments with a large number of eggs, which are excreted together with the stool. Thus the sick person becomes a distributor of parasites. Fecal analysis is performed to detect worm eggs and allows you to determine the presence of helminths and its species (pinworms, tapeworms, etc. ).

Since the active vital activity of the parasite is manifested by the release of toxic substances and sensitization of the organism, characteristic changes in the blood formula can be observed in the analysis. A complete blood count helps detect an increase in eosinophil levels and, less commonly, anemia. This study allows you to suspect or confirm the presence of a parasitic disease without specifying the type of parasite.

Fecal analysis is not always informative. The absence of helminthic eggs in the feces gives reason to exclude only some types of helminthiasis. To detect other parasites, a blood test for antibodies to them (echinococcus, opisthorchiasis, Trichinella, etc. ) is performed. Determining the type of parasite helps the doctor prescribe the necessary additional examinations or immediately choose the right treatment.

Tests for parasites can and should be done if an infection is suspected (occurrence of characteristic problems and health problems), those who live in areas with increased risk of infection, employees in child care facilities, food industry, family members wheredetected parasitic disease, etc. . d.

Timely detection and treatment of parasitosis helps to avoid threatening complications and health problems.

The following are most commonly used:

  • Immunoenzymatic, also called ELISA.
  • Blood chemoscanning.
  • Serological analysis.
  • PCR-diagnosis of blood in the presence of parasites.
  • Each analysis has its own characteristics and can only be prescribed by a doctor, if he deems it necessary.

Bound immunosorbent test

It can be used to make antibodies and antigens in the blood of adults and children. That is, it shows quite reliably how many parasitic worms and their metabolic products there are.

This analysis allows not only to determine the presence of helminths in the body, but also to monitor the dynamics of treatment or diseases caused by worms. Most often, enzyme immunoassay is prescribed when there is a suspicion of the presence of echinococcus in the tissues.

How to check for parasites

The best way to test for parasites is to do a stool test. Most doctors will order a standard stool test if parasites are suspected, but these tests are not as accurate as the detailed tests used in functional disorders medicine.

Standard stool tests can detect parasites or their eggs, but such tests are generally limited. The problem with these tests is that they are only marginally effective. They require three separate stool samples that are sent to a laboratory where a pathologist examines them under a microscope. The life cycle of parasites is unique - it allows them to be in a middle state between hibernation and functioning.

To detect parasites by standard tests, the stool sample must contain a live parasite, the parasite must remain alive until the sample is taken to the laboratory, and then the pathologist must see the live parasite under a microscope. Although this type of test may be important for some, it does not detect dormant parasites and for this reason this type of stool test is often false negative.

Detailed analysis of feces used in the medicine of functional disorders. Extended analysis is much more accurate than standard fecal analysis due to the fact that it uses polymerase chain reaction (PRC) technology, which makes the DNA of the parasite more visible. This means that the parasite may be dead or dormant, but will still be detected during this analysis.

Because this test uses PCR technology, its success does not depend on the pathologist’s ability to see the parasite under a microscope. It is quite common to diagnose a parasite in a patient whose standard faecal analysis did not reveal a pest.

Many consider fecal analysis to be the most reliable test for parasites. At the moment this is not the case at all. With just one drop of blood, you can detect the presence of uninvited guests. You will need a magnifying device and a video camera for an accurate diagnosis.

A blood test is considered the most informative. They are now conducting several tests that differ in their methods, but all are aimed at identifying parasites in the body.

Where to test

You can take a blood test for helminths and protozoa with reliable results at a medical center that has its own clinical diagnostic laboratory.

You can take a blood test for helminths and protozoa with reliable results at a medical center that has its own clinical diagnostic laboratory. The processing of the received material takes a minimum of time.

Clinics use modern technologies that enable our specialists to perform professional analysis, and patients - without waiting and waiting to get the most complete information about their health. We employ highly qualified specialists in the field of parasitology, who have successful experience in well-known clinics in Europe and the USA and whose experience is used by specialists from other clinics.

What parasitic diseases can be detected by tests

Opisthorchiasis

The disease is caused by the worm opisthorchis, which chooses the human liver, gallbladder or pancreas as its habitat. The infection occurs after consuming raw or dried fish infected with opisthorchiasis larvae. It is manifested by severe pain in the epigastric region and right hypochondrium, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, weakness, headache, liver enlargement and pain.

The patient's blood is tested for the number of eosinophils (leukocytes responsible for binding a foreign protein circulating in the blood) and signs of anemia.

Trichinosis

Trichinosis is caused by Trichinella. It develops when eating poorly cooked or fried meat

The disease is caused by Trichinella. It develops when eating poorly cooked or fried meat. It is manifested by headaches, muscle aches, swelling of the face (especially eyelids), allergies and periodic fever.

Ascariasis

Ascaris can reach 40 cm in length, lives in the intestines. Larvae can settle in the lungs, liver, heart. There are cases when these parasites come out through the mouth, nose or even ears. It can be manifested by atopic dermatitis, neurodermatitis, allergies, chronic bronchitis, sinusitis, hepatitis, mycoses. As well as frequent pain in the umbilical region, loss of appetite, dizziness, fainting, poor sleep. Infection occurs when personal hygiene is not respected and unwashed fruits and vegetables are eaten.

Toxocariasis

Toxocara helminth in humans parasitizes in the form of larvae that occupy the liver, lungs, heart, kidneys, brain, eyes. Deaths with damage to the heart and nervous system are known. It is manifested by allergic reactions, bronchial asthma, fever, cough, enlarged liver, damage to the organs of vision with the possible development of blindness.

Infection occurs through dirty hands and contaminated food.

Echinococcosis

In this type of disease, cysts are formed in the liver, lungs and other internal organs of a person, which are formed by parasite larvae. The presence of cysts in the liver is manifested by pain in the right hypochondrium, weakness, malaise, fatigue, decreased activity, and sometimes allergic reactions. When the cyst is located in the lungs, coughing and shortness of breath occur. You can get echinococcosis if you do not follow personal hygiene.

Giardiasis

Giardia are single-celled microorganisms with several pairs of flagella that live in the lumen of the human small intestine. The disease is manifested by diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, discoloration and skin texture. Infection occurs when eating food and water contaminated with Giardia cysts.

For the most complete diagnosis, it may be necessary to pass feces to identify helminth eggs, as well as undergo other types of research. In case of pain in the epigastric region, it is also advisable to contact a gastroenterologist, give feces for Helicobacter pylori antigen (Helicobacter pylori), do an ultrasound examination of the abdominal organs and perform a gastroscopy.

Complications of parasitic diseases

When a parasite lives or dies, toxic substances are released into the host organism. They can cause weakness, constant fatigue, dizziness, headache, nausea, loss of appetite. In addition, these substances cause sensitization of the body, which causes allergies - rash, dermatitis, bronchitis. Many parasites choose to inhabit the human gastrointestinal tract. By strengthening in the intestines, as well as nutrition, parasites damage and destroy mucosal cells and blood cells. Extensive damage to the mucous membranes can manifest as pain, nausea and disorders in the processes of digestion and absorption of nutrients.

A large number of parasites (for example, roundworms), which weave into a ball, can cause intestinal obstruction and acute intestinal obstruction. The risk of this complication is especially high in young children, because their intestinal lumen is narrower.

The parasite is so named because the interests of the host organism do not care much for it. It takes all the necessary elements from food, depriving the host of many necessary nutrients - minerals and vitamins. Therefore, one of the consequences of parasitic diseases is hypovitaminosis and beriberi, which can be manifested by reduced immunity, deterioration of skin, nails, hair, etc. Significant loss of blood cells (due to parasite food by them) and their insufficient production (due to hypovitaminosis) leads to anemia. A parasite such as Trichinella lives and feeds on muscles, which causes severe muscle pain.

A parasite such as Trichinella lives and feeds on muscles, which causes severe muscle pain. Parasites that live or multiply in the bile ducts (eg opisthorchiasis) can cause obstruction of the bile ducts, which is manifested by jaundice of the skin and sclera, itching.

Parasites are a source of regular chronic cell damage, which causes their malignant changes and the development of cancer.

Another danger of parasites is that an infected person in most cases becomes the cause of other people's infections. As a result, all family members can become ill if one of them has parasites.

Some parasites, in order to improve their survival, have a very complex life cycle, during which they change several hosts and in each they exist in the form of different life forms. For echinococcus, for example, a person is a dead end of the life cycle and, entering his body, the parasite forms cysts and capsules in various organs (brain, liver, lungs).

The appearance of cysts in the brain can cause the development of epilepsy and other neurological disorders. In addition, cysts are a source of abscesses in the internal organs.

To protect yourself and your loved ones from parasites, it is necessary to identify and treat parasitic diseases in time. A comprehensive examination for helminthiasis helps.

How to get rid of parasites

A detailed analysis of feces can identify 17 different parasites, so when the doctor finds out what pest is in the patient's body, he prescribes those drugs that aim to destroy a particular type of parasite.

However, if the parasite cannot be detected, the doctor may prescribe mixtures of herbs, including magnesium with caprylic acid, barberine, tribulus extracts, wormwood, grapefruit, barberry, bearberry and black walnut.

Usually these ingredients can be found in a pharmacy. By producing beneficial intestinal bacteria, these herbal formulas provide a wide range of action against the most common pathogens found in the human gastrointestinal tract.

It is advisable to consult a doctor before you start to fight parasites with herbal medicines, and in case of previous liver diseases, excessive alcohol consumption or previous increase in liver enzyme levels, it is worth checking their level again.

If you suspect the presence of parasites living in the liver, probing and checking the taken material is prescribed. If the test results showed the presence of these parasites, then long-term treatment is carried out in a hospital, which does not always lead to a positive result. Some patients are treated for years and cannot get rid of the parasite. And it was only necessary to use tested fish and subject it to thorough heat treatment. To prevent parasite infestation, always wash your hands before eating with soap and running water, wash fruits, vegetables and greens thoroughly. After washing, everything must be poured over boiling water.

Do not drink water from untested sources or boil it. Boil and fry meat and fish well. Do not drink uncooked cow's milk. Proven and pasteurized dairy products are better to take in the store. Do not forget to carry out preventive deworming of pets, treat them in time against fleas. Get rid of rodents that often live in basements.

If you suspect the presence of parasites in your body, contact your doctor to prescribe a detailed analysis of feces. After all, it all starts in the gut, and the gut is the path to health. A healthy gut means a healthy person.