Tapeworm

A tapeworm is a parasite that attaches to the walls of the intestine after it enters a person's digestive tract. A person may become infected with tapeworms after eating raw or undercooked meat or fish that contains the worms.

Tapeworm infection may not cause any symptoms. If symptoms are present, they are usually mild and include diarrhea, pain in the upper abdomen (epigastric area), and weight loss.

Medication is needed to eliminate a tapeworm infection. Infection can be prevented by thoroughly freezing or cooking meat and fish.

Last Updated: September 11, 2008

Author: Debby Golonka, MPH

Medical Review: Michael J. Sexton, MD - Pediatrics & Donald Sproule, MD, CM, CCFP, FCFP - Family Medicine

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