Table of contents:
- What types of parasites live in the brain?
- How do parasites get into the brain?
- Symptoms and consequences
Video: Parasites In The Human Head And Worms In The Brain
- 1 What types of parasites live in the brain?
- 2 How do parasites get into the brain?
- 3 Symptoms and consequences
In parasitology, there is such a term as "parasites in human hair." These include the head louse or linen louse (living on the hairline of a person's torso). However, there are also more terrible situations in which no less dangerous parasites - helminths - are localized in the brain. How they get there and what are the symptoms of the presence of worms in the brain, we understand below in the material.
What types of parasites live in the brain?
Mostly parasites that enter the human body, the gastrointestinal tract is chosen as the location for themselves. This is where they breed, live and feed. However, in rare cases (when certain types of worms enter the body), the parasite can also penetrate the brain. Who can live on the head of a person? These types of worms are:
- Amoeba. The simplest organism that enters the organs and systems of a person not with food, but through the nasal passages and auricles when swimming in polluted water bodies. Mostly infection with amoebiosis is observed in countries with hot and humid climates or in persistent hot weather.
- Ascaris. The parasite, sometimes reaching a length of 20 cm. In most cases lives in the human intestine. But it can also freely circulate with the blood stream throughout the body and be fixed in the liver, lungs and even in the heart. Ascaris can reach the brain from the upper parts of the human body through the brachial veins. The presence of ascaris in the brain greatly aggravates the patient's condition, provoking a lot of symptoms similar to oncology and other severe pathologies.
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- Echinococcal and pork tapeworm. These parasites live in the intestines of animals. Moreover, if the echinococcal tapeworm lives exclusively in the digestive tract of dogs, then the pork tapeworm can affect the intestines and bodies of pigs, rabbits, dogs. It is the pork tapeworm that provokes such a pathology as cysticercosis (the life of the parasite in the human brain). It is in this environment that the worm can live for 7-30 years. At the end of the life cycle, the worm takes on the shape and structure of the mineral, which continues to provoke an inflammatory process in the human brain. Infection with these types of tapeworms occurs exclusively through dirty hands after contact with domestic or street animals, as well as after eating meat that has undergone insufficient heat treatment.
- Toxoplasma. One of the protozoa species that affects humans after contact with a cat. And both with street and home.
How do parasites get into the brain?
It should be understood that the localization of worms in the head does not occur immediately. In most cases, they first choose the human intestine as their habitat. And only then eventually they reach the brain. In particular, parasitologists identify several ways in which the helminth can reach the human brain:
- Through the respiratory system. Moreover, in this case, the parasite can first enter the lungs or bronchi from the intestines with blood flow, or get there through inhalation of dust with the larvae or eggs of the parasite (this happens extremely rarely). In even rarer cases, the helminth can enter the nasopharynx in the form of a living individual and from there go to the brain.
- With blood flow. In this case, the parasite bores the intestinal wall and enters the venous bloodstream. And already with the blood flow it goes to various organs and systems. Including the brain.
- Through the auricles. This occurs mainly when swimming in polluted water bodies. There, the larva enters the ear, where it reaches its sexual maturity. After that, the parasite by the shortest route enters the brain, where it stops.
Symptoms and consequences
The presence of parasites in the brain can manifest itself in various symptoms, reminiscent of symptoms of damage to the central nervous system. Moreover, the clinical picture can move upward depending on the intensity of the helminthic invasion. So, you need to pay close attention to the following symptoms, which can signal the presence of parasites in the brain, including:
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- Headaches with nausea and vomiting. In this case, the pain can be localized in the back of the head or in the region of the temples;
- Depressive states, followed by fatigue or, conversely, excessive hyperactivity;
- Sleep disorders in the form of problems with falling asleep, waking up. Insomnia is possible;
- Visual disturbances, and sharply progressing;
- Breakdowns with regular frequency;
- Malfunctions of the cardiovascular system;
- High intracranial pressure, leading to hallucinations;
- Periodic clouding of consciousness and even fainting;
- Fever and chronic meningitis;
- Inhibition of reflexes and partial, but gradual degradation of the personality are the final signs that parasites live in the brain;
- Also, helminths living in the head environment can provoke seizures of epilepsy.
When diagnosing a patient, a puncture of the brain is often taken in the hope of confirming the diagnosis of "oncology". However, puncture does not detect tissue malignancy, but also does not reveal the presence of parasites. The collected cerebral fluid itself has a yellowish tint.
It is important to understand that late diagnosis and poor-quality treatment can lead to very serious consequences for the patient. At a minimum, the following conditions may develop:
- General intoxication of the body with the waste products of the parasites living in it;
- Destruction of the brain against the background of compression of its tissues by parasites;
- Inflammatory processes in the brain in places of localization of helminths or in places of formation of calcifications during the death of parasites.
In any of these cases, surgery is required. Otherwise, the pathology is fatal. Therefore, with the slightest suspicion of a possible helminthic invasion and with any, even partial symptoms of a parasitic infection, it is worth contacting a parasitologist for further diagnosis and quality treatment.