Opisthorchiasis Symptoms And Methods Of Treating The Disease

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Opisthorchiasis Symptoms And Methods Of Treating The Disease
Opisthorchiasis Symptoms And Methods Of Treating The Disease

Video: Opisthorchiasis Symptoms And Methods Of Treating The Disease

Отличия серверных жестких дисков от десктопных
Video: Diseases caused by opisthorchiasis. The Lecture Of Irina Stefan Parasitology. Issue 13 2023, February

Symptoms of opisthorchiasis, phases and treatment of the disease


  • 1 Acute symptoms of the disease
  • 2 Acute phase of the disease in severe cases
  • 3 Hepatocholangitis form of the disease
  • 4 Gastroenterocolitic form of the disease
  • 5 Chronic phase of the disease
  • 6 How does the disease manifest in children
  • 7 What is asthmatic cough
  • 8 Asthenic syndrome with opisthorchiasis
  • 9 Allergy with opisthorchiasis
  • 10 Pain in muscles and joints with opisthorchiasis
  • 11 How to react to the first symptoms of the disease
  • 12 Disease diagnosis
  • 13 Why stool analysis can be unreliable
  • 14 ELISA research: what it is taken for
  • 15 How to treat a disease
  • 16 Prevention of helminth infections

Opisthorchiasis is an ailment caused by a cat's fluke (or Siberian fluke). The helminth reaches its sexual maturity in a human or animal organism, and it settles in the gallbladder and its ducts, as well as in the liver and pancreas.

The source of infection is a person or an animal, their feces end up in the water, and, therefore, penetrate into the water and eggs of the larvae. Snails swallow eggs from the water, and they are an intermediate link in the spread of the disease.

The final link is fish, mainly of the carp family. If a person eats an insufficiently fried infected fish, the parasite develops already in his digestive tract


Acute symptoms of the disease

The causative agent of opisthorchiasis is fluke, it is dangerous precisely because it becomes a sexually mature individual already in the body of a person or animal. It can significantly harm a person's health, and he will not immediately understand what the reasons for his poor health are.

In most cases, the disease begins acutely. The first signs of opisthorchiasis are low-grade fever (in an adult), weakness, malaise, and high sweating. Of course, such symptoms can indicate many other pathologies, therefore, it is stupid and dangerous to diagnose yourself. If the disease is mild, then the subsequent course of the disease has little symptoms, the temperature can rise, but for a short time.

The average severity of the acute period is already a fever, the body temperature gradually reaches 40 degrees, catarrhal phenomena are recorded in the upper respiratory tract. After one to two weeks, there are positive changes, the disease flows into the latent stage. It is replaced by a chronic phase, which can last up to 25 years.


Acute phase of the disease in severe cases

Doctors associate a severe course with typhoid, gastroenterocolitic, and hepatocholangitis variants of the pathology. The upper respiratory tract is mainly affected. It can be pleurisy, pneumonia, asthmatic bronchitis.

Typhoid-like variant is characterized by:

  • Acute onset of the disease;
  • Temperature jump;
  • Severe chills;
  • Lymphadenopathy;
  • Rash on the skin.

    Severe chills
    Severe chills
    Skin rash
    Skin rash

Such patients complain of severe weakness, muscle-joint pain and aches, headaches, coughing fits and digestive disturbances. The acute phase lasts 14-21 days.

Of course, only symptoms are not a reason to diagnose opisthorchiasis. The patient needs an accurate diagnosis for the treatment to be adequate. There is no need to wait for several days or weeks - see your doctor on the first day of the change in condition.

The disease is painful for the patient, in addition to a general decline in strength, the inability to behave as usual, work and be active, the patient is still frightened by such symptoms. Therefore, an early diagnosis contributes to the timely treatment of the patient, and he will no longer be afraid of the unknown.

Hepatocholangitis form of the disease

It is distinguished by a high temperature, but the main feature of the disease is liver damage and cholangiocholecystitis. The organ itself increases in size, jaundice appears, pain occurs in the right side, resembling colic. If the case is severe, pancretitis (the pancreas is affected) can join the general picture. A person has severe pain in the hypochondrium, dyspeptic disorders.


The situation is not easy, and it is possible to immediately understand that it is opisthorchiasis or another ailment only by passing a set of tests. But it is impossible to delay the diagnosis, in advanced and severe cases, only drug treatment is no longer enough, the patient needs an operation, and the forecasts cannot be called the most optimistic.

Gastroenterocolitic form of the disease

And this form of the disease is also quite severe - the patient has erosive gastritis, enterocolitis. He may have stomach and duodenal ulcers. In this case, a person complains of abdominal pain, vomiting and nausea, loss of strength, problems with appetite, and indigestion.

Intoxication syndrome is not always bright, sometimes it is weak. Many people prefer to just endure the pain, lie down for a couple of days, not paying attention to the symptoms. But the parasite literally rages in the body, and it must be stopped, since the consequences of opisthorchiasis can be more than serious.


Chronic phase of the disease

When the acute phase of the disease subsides, outwardly the patient is recovering, the disease becomes chronic (unless, of course, it is treated). And pathology is noticeable in the form of dyskinesia of the biliary tract, cholecystitis and also became chronic pancreatitis.

Unfortunately, these diseases in themselves contribute to the addition of a secondary infection, and the situation can reach hepatitis. Persistent hepatitis refers to severe liver diseases, and the treatment regimen for opisthorchiasis should be such that the disease does not reach it.

How does the disease manifest in children

In children, the symptomatology of opisthorchiasis will not be fundamentally different. An existing helminthic invasion, among other things, will be signaled by increased gas production and the appearance of asthma. But the last point indicates an already severe form of the disease.

The first thing that should alert the parent is the child's high fatigue. He is unusually weak, not as active as usual. The child often has disturbed sleep and food allergies. Moreover, this allergy can occur to those products that the baby previously tolerated perfectly. For a long time, the disease can develop asymptomatically, the body temperature does not always rise.


What is asthma cough

Often, an asthmatic (or asthmoid) cough is a companion of helminthic invasion. This term is called an accelerated exhalation through the mouth, which occurs as a satellite of the narrowed lumen of the bronchi in connection with myo-spasms. The submucous layer swells, viscous sputum is strongly secreted. This type of cough is also considered allergic - the painful process is preceded by external factors, including infection with parasites.

Symptoms of asthmatic cough:

  1. Shortness of breath and difficulty breathing without provocative factors;
  2. The suddenness of the attack - sometimes after tears, laughter, and physical exertion;
  3. Increased cough at night and in the morning;
  4. Stuffy nose;
  5. Pale skin;
  6. Severe cough, clear sputum;
  7. Sore throat, dryness and short-term pain;
  8. Long-term seizures - last about 2-3 weeks;
  9. Absence of other symptoms characteristic of respiratory infections.


Of course, a similar clinic may refer to another type of cough, but mostly it is a cough specifically asthmatic, allergic. It is necessary to look for the cause of its appearance - unfortunately, it is often worms.

Asthenic syndrome with opisthorchiasis

Asthenic syndrome is the body's reaction from the central nervous system. In adults, this is expressed in irritability, mental and physical fatigue, which comes too quickly. The performance is noticeably reduced. There is a feeling of constant weakness, inertia.

Headaches, frequent and debilitating, may begin. You may also experience unusual tremors in your arms and legs. Of course, this symptomatology refers not only to opisthorchiasis, but if it is accompanied by other symptoms characteristic of this disease, then the probability of such a diagnosis is high.


Allergy with opisthorchiasis

Most often it is expressed as an allergic rash, the nature of which the patient himself cannot understand. Sometimes a person confuses it with hives, psoriasis, or herpes. The rash usually affects the face, joints, and flexor surfaces. Small cracks in the skin may even appear. Areas of the skin that are not affected acquire a grayish tint, and they are dry to the touch.

In patients with such signs, there is an increased sensitivity of the skin to the influence of ultraviolet radiation, which, in turn, leads to severe itching. And such symptoms may well lead to allergic bronchitis and even bronchial asthma.


Pain in muscles and joints with opisthorchiasis

Myoarthralgia (as joint and muscle pain is correctly called) has at least a dozen possible causes. And these are only common, often diagnosed ones. We can talk about endocrine diseases, autoimmune diseases, infections of various nature, and even stress.

Helminths can also lead to these symptoms. This is due to the intoxication of the body. It breaks the body, there is muscle pain and weakness, the joints ache and also hurt. The state of soreness and general weakness can be insignificant, or it can completely deprive you of working capacity. Do not expose yourself during this period to additional stress, rest, drink plenty of water, eat only what the diet prescribes.


How to respond to the first symptoms of the disease

Of course, ideally, one should not wait until the clinical picture becomes even clearer, and go to the doctor at the first discomfort that does not go away. Yes, digestive upsets are common, and this is not necessarily associated with worms, but if it is accompanied by allergic symptoms and fever, parasitic infection becomes more and more likely.

The first stage of treatment is always symptomatic therapy. Before killing parasites, you need to alleviate the patient's condition. The body in the physiological stress caused by helminths will also find it difficult to cope with the medication load.

Therefore, if you have a fever, drink an antipyretic. If there are problems with the gastrointestinal tract, the doctor will prescribe medications that will normalize the condition in this system. Antihistamines will treat allergies that can be painful.

Diagnosis of the disease

The question of how to determine opisthorchiasis has its own nuances. The clinical picture of the disease is ambiguous. There are indeed difficulties in differential diagnosis, since pathology is characterized by polysyndromism, as well as the nonspecificity of the clinic. You must first make sure that the patient is definitely not typhoid, and not acute respiratory diseases. Since the symptoms are similar to viral hepatitis, it is also necessary to exclude it.

The first point of the examination is a blood test. This is an indirect diagnostic method, and it allows you to identify a change in the amount of certain substances in the blood.


How to identify parasites by blood:

  1. General blood analysis. A large number of leukocytes and a high ESR are the first warning signs. If there is an excess of the norm of eosinophils in the blood plasma, this also speaks in favor of helminthiasis.
  2. Blood chemistry. Infection is indicated by an increased level of thymol and sublimate samples with a high concentration of the enzyme in the pancreas. The stage of the disease is determined, and appropriate treatment is prescribed.
  3. Linked immunosorbent assay. If helminths have affected the liver, then the analysis will determine the growth of the hepatic enzyme ALT. At the same time, protein, cholesterol, amylases will be revealed. A serological blood test is also quite informative.

Why stool analysis can be unreliable

This research technique is more informative in the later stages of the disease. In the early stages, it makes no sense to believe him. A false negative result is more than likely even if symptoms are present.

According to the analysis of feces, a laboratory assistant can only determine the eggs of worms that appeared 4-6 weeks after infection. From the first test, it is problematic to detect the parasite, therefore, for the accuracy of the study, the patient is prescribed 3-5 study sessions. That is, you need to pass a feces analysis at least three times.

Feces are diluted with glycerin and applied to glass. A laboratory assistant examines biological material through a microscope. The number of eggs is detected by the Goryachev method. Eggs precipitate when feces are mixed with salt solution or sodium nitrate.


ELISA study: what it is taken for

The ELISA study is an accurate and modern way to determine even a small concentration of parasites in the body. ELISA is an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay that detects antigens, foreign proteins secreted by the helminths themselves, as well as response antibodies. This test can be called a high sensitivity test because it is able to detect invasion at an early stage.

For ELISA, venous blood is required, the accuracy of such an analysis reaches 95%. This is definitely a high figure. But nevertheless, it was not without drawbacks - the study is long, sometimes it reaches 9 days.

What additional diagnostic methods may be needed:

  • CT;
  • Biopsy;
  • X-ray immunofluorescence;
  • Endoscopic analysis;
  • Indirect gamma-glucose reaction.


How to treat opisthorchiasis in adults, ideally, should be decided by a parasitologist. But such specialists are far from being in all clinics, therefore, initially the patient must turn to the local therapist, and then to those doctors whom the therapist will recommend. If there is an infectious disease doctor at the health center or health facilities in your area, you will most likely be referred to him.

How to treat a disease

Throughout all stages of treatment, the patient is recommended to adhere to a special diet. This is the so-called "Table No. 5" - a medical food that excludes pickles, pickled and spicy dishes, baked goods, etc.

Stages of deworming:

  1. Preparatory. The doctor prescribes anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic and choleretic drugs, as well as antihistamines. Perhaps the appointment of hepatoprotectors and adsorbents. The duration of this stage is dictated by the severity of the disease, usually it is 10-20 days.
  2. Deworming. The main treatment at this stage is anthelmintic drugs. You cannot assign them to yourself. The drugs are drunk in courses. The therapeutic course cannot be interrupted, as well as changing the dosage regimen determined by the doctor is also prohibited.
  3. Recovery. Many dead parasites accumulate in the gallbladder, its ducts, therefore, to remove them, you need to create a good outflow of bile. This is facilitated by choleretic drugs and hepatoprotectors. And to help the immune system, the patient is prescribed vitamin complexes and various dietary supplements.

It should take at least six months before doctors can evaluate the effectiveness of treatment. In order to completely remove worms from the body, to restore the healthy functioning of the gastrointestinal tract, it takes time. Do not forget - the treatment of opisthorchiasis is long-term and multi-component, and only a doctor can prescribe it.

Prevention of helminth infections

Prevention of opisthorchiasis is simple, but very strict rules are included. The basis of primary prevention is the formation of the foundations of a healthy lifestyle in both children and adults. It includes family social well-being, personal hygiene, healthy eating and physical activity. All family members should know that washing their hands after the street is rule number 1, that fruits, berries, vegetables are always washed thoroughly.

The kitchen should be in order: for each type of food its own cutting boards and knives. Never defrost meat and fish outside the refrigerator. Either transfer from the freezer to the upper shelves of the refrigerator, or turn on the defrost function in the microwave.

Finally, heat treatment. It is because of the violation of the rules of heat treatment that parasites do not die in fish, and thus enter the human body.

How to cook fish properly:

  • It should be cooked for at least 15 minutes after boiling;
  • Fish is fried for at least 20 minutes, while large fish are fried and cut into pieces along the ridge;
  • Heat treatment in foil should last at least 40 minutes;
  • Fish pies are baked for at least 45-60 minutes;
  • All marinades with fish are made only with a previously boiled product.

Do not cut fish and vegetables with one knife. For meat in the house there should be one board, for fish - another, for vegetables - a third. Also change the boards at least once every 2-5 years (depending on the quality of the board).

If you think that taking a course of pills with the whole family will be the best prevention of opisthorchiasis, this is a mistake. If you are not sick, then why expose your body to a rather serious drug load, which sometimes has side effects? And such measures do not protect against subsequent infection.

For drug prevention to be adequate and timely, have the whole family tested for helminths at least once a year. If a problem is found even without symptoms, the doctor will prescribe medication. And then the medicines will be useful and effective. Drinking drugs "just in case" is an extra risk. A person who is treated without a diagnosis is most likely a hypochondriac, and whom he should definitely visit is a psychologist or a psychotherapist.

Opisthorchiasis is a helminth infection, not at all a harmless disease that can cause serious damage to health. It almost always starts in the acute phase and becomes chronic without treatment. People with symptoms characteristic of opisthorchiasis must definitely consult a doctor, undergo all the necessary diagnostics and three-stage treatment. You should not turn to folk recipes as opposed to the medication scheme. An indispensable stage of treatment is the dietary component.


The diet should be adhered to from the moment the first symptoms appear, and as much as the doctor recommends to maintain a certain diet. Remember that you can talk about complete recovery no earlier than six months after the onset of the disease.

In children, the disease occurs much less frequently than in adults, and it often goes away without symptoms. The surest way to protect yourself from an illness is to keep order in the kitchen, always maintain personal hygiene, monitor all the nuances of heat treatment of fish and regularly take tests for the presence of parasites in the body.

Video - Specialists about opisthorchiasis.

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