Tapeworms are common all over the world. Even if fewer than 1,000 Americans are infected per year, there are still plenty of cases.
If you’re concerned about tapeworms and think that you may be infected, keep reading. These are five signs of tapeworm that you should look out for, especially if you’ve been travelling outside of the United States.
A tapeworm infection can cause many symptoms in your body and it’s important to know when you have one. Here are 5 warning signs of tapeworm infections:
1. Worms in Your Stool
One of the most concerning symptoms is finding worms in your stool.
Patients have reported seeing worm larvae in their stool as well as whole worms or parts of worms. Some people even report feelings of the worms moving through their anus.
This is understandably alarming. Your first reaction may be to freak out, but you should pick up the phone and call your doctor. They’ll know the right tests to run.
If you’ve had a seizure, this could be evidence that a tapeworm has traveled from your abdomen to your brain. If this worm decides to attack your eyes or brain, you could have a seizure.
This is more concerning if you’ve never had seizures before. However, you should consult your doctor before you become concerned about tapeworms.
Some people have seizure disorders that aren’t diagnosed later in life. Just be sure to discuss all of your symptoms with your physician.
3. High White Blood Cell Count
Tapeworm infections can cause high white blood cell counts. If you have blood work done and notice an increase in your white blood count, your doctor should alert you.
You should let your physician know all of your symptoms so that they can determine the right tests to run.
If there is a tapeworm, they’ll be sure to find it from your symptoms and test results.
4. Vitamin Deficiency
Some patients with tapeworm infections end up developing iron deficiencies or Vitamin B12 deficiencies. These deficiencies happen because the worms are fighting your body for nutrition absorption.
Basically, you become deficient because the tapeworms are taking these nutrients from your body.
If your doctor tells you that you’re deficient in iron or Vitamin B12, you should let them know if you’re having other symptoms.
5. Abdominal Pain
Sharp, shooting pains in your abdomen can indicate a parasitic infection like a tapeworm infection. Learning to fight the symptoms can help with getting rid of these parasites.
If you’re having abdominal pain, you should alert a medical physician. A tapeworm infection is just one possible diagnosis from abdominal pain.
There are many diagnoses that a medical physician may consider if you’re complaining of abdominal pain.
If You Spot Signs of Tapeworm
If you have spotted any of the signs of tapeworms above, you shouldn’t hesitate to reach out to a doctor.
You should go ahead and schedule an appointment, especially if you’ve been travelling recently.
Having tapeworm can be dangerous, so you need to make sure that you seek medical attention.