Parasites In The Human Brain: Symptoms And Treatment

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Parasites In The Human Brain: Symptoms And Treatment
Parasites In The Human Brain: Symptoms And Treatment

Video: Parasites In The Human Brain: Symptoms And Treatment

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Video: She Had a Worm in the Brain | Unbelievable Survivors | Only Human 2023, February
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Parasites in the human brain: symptoms and treatment

In adults and children, in the process of instrumental studies, parasites in the brain can be detected. In most cases, the cause of damage to the central nervous system is helminths and protozoa that get there from the external environment. Parasitic diseases can lead to dangerous consequences (encephalitis, fainting, convulsions, increased intracranial pressure, dementia and tissue compression).

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In most cases, the cause of damage to the central nervous system is helminths and protozoa that get there from the external environment.

How worms enter the brain

The damage to the brain is caused by the ingress of eggs or larvae of parasites from the external environment. This happens in the following ways:

  • alimentary (food, water);
  • contact and household;
  • air-dusty.
Meat can be a factor in the transmission of an infectious agent
Meat can be a factor in the transmission of an infectious agent

Meat can be a factor in the transmission of an infectious agent.

Drinking unboiled water can lead to parasite infestation
Drinking unboiled water can lead to parasite infestation

Drinking unboiled water can lead to parasite infestation.

Unwashed fruits are factors of transmission of the infectious agent
Unwashed fruits are factors of transmission of the infectious agent

Unwashed fruits are factors of transmission of the infectious agent.

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The transmission factors of the infectious agent are hands, unwashed food (vegetables, fruits, herbs), earth, unboiled water, pet hair, meat and dust. Worms such as echinococcus enter the body in the form of oncospheres (eggs). They are released into the environment (soil) by wild animals (canines). Risk factors for infection are:

  • animal husbandry;
  • butchering of carcasses of killed animals;
  • close contact with dogs;
  • hunting;
  • growing vegetables near slaughterhouses and livestock farms;
  • rare hand washing;
  • drinking unboiled water contaminated with feces from sick animals;
  • the use of unwashed agricultural products.
Rare hand washing can lead to parasite infestation
Rare hand washing can lead to parasite infestation

Rare hand washing can lead to parasite infestation.

Hunting is a risk factor for parasite infestation
Hunting is a risk factor for parasite infestation

Hunting is a risk factor for infection with parasites.

Risk factors for infection are animal husbandry
Risk factors for infection are animal husbandry

Animal husbandry is a risk factor for infection.

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Eggs with larvae can spread throughout the body. They enter the liver and lungs through the bloodstream. If they do not settle in these organs with the help of suction cups, then the parasites enter the brain. Infection with echinococcus from a sick person is impossible.

Infection of a person with toxocars occurs due to non-compliance with the rules of personal hygiene. The main mechanism is fecal-oral (through the mouth). A person brings eggs of worms into the digestive tract with dirty hands through contact with the ground or through contact with infected food. Decreased immunity, stress and radiation contribute to the development of the disease.

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A person brings eggs of worms into the digestive tract with dirty hands on contact with the ground.

Some worms enter the human brain as larvae. This is observed in neurocysticercosis. The parasite is transmitted by eating contaminated meat or by contact with humans. The larvae enter the stomach, where their membrane is destroyed. The parasite is absorbed into the bloodstream and spreads throughout the body. It can penetrate the brain, muscles and eyes. Most often, the lesion is multiple.

Sometimes parasites invade the brain when bitten by a tsetse fly. The central nervous system is affected in the later stages of the disease. The spread of protozoa occurs through the blood. Danger to humans is posed by metacyclic trypomastigotes (an invasive form of the pathogen).

Parasitic diseases of the brain

Dysfunctions of the brain can cause both helminths and some dangerous microorganisms (protozoa). The following diseases are most common:

  • neurocysticercosis (teniasis);
  • echinococcosis;
  • toxocariasis;
  • African trypanosomiasis.

The cerebral membranes, ventricles and the surface of the cortex are affected.

Cysticercus (larvae) can live in the brain for up to 30 years without causing symptoms of the disease.

With echinococcosis, one cyst of the parasite is most often found in the brain. The larva trapped in the organ forms a capsule and a bubble up to 6 cm in size. This pathology requires surgical treatment.

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With echinococcosis, one cyst of the parasite is most often found in the brain. The larva trapped in the organ forms a capsule and a bubble up to 6 cm in size. This pathology requires surgical treatment.

Manifestations of neurocysticercosis

The main signs of neurocysticercosis are:

  • epileptic seizures;
  • dizziness;
  • headache;
  • depression;
  • aggressiveness;
  • rave;
  • hallucinations;
  • slight paresis (limitation of range of motion);
  • speech disorders;
  • decreased visual acuity;
  • strabismus;
  • difficulty breathing.
Headache may be a manifestation of neurocysticercosis
Headache may be a manifestation of neurocysticercosis

Headache can be a manifestation of neurocysticercosis.

Decreased visual acuity is a sign of neurocysticercosis
Decreased visual acuity is a sign of neurocysticercosis

Decreased visual acuity is a sign of neurocysticercosis.

The main symptom of neurocysticercosis is epileptic seizures
The main symptom of neurocysticercosis is epileptic seizures

The main symptom of neurocysticercosis is epileptic seizures.

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Most often, the presence of parasites is manifested by scanty symptoms. Neurocysticercosis proceeds with alternation of exacerbations and light intervals.

Symptoms of brain echinococcosis

Echinococci most often cause damage to the lining of the brain (meningitis). The following symptoms occur:

  • rare heartbeat;
  • muscle tension;
  • bursting and excruciating headache;
  • convulsions;
  • increased sensitivity to noise;
  • soreness of the skull on palpation;
  • pathological reflexes;
  • restriction of movement;
  • visual disturbances in the form of strabismus, double vision and dilated pupils;
  • drowsiness;
  • dizziness.
With echinococcosis of the brain, there may be dizziness
With echinococcosis of the brain, there may be dizziness

With echinococcosis of the brain, there may be dizziness.

Rare heartbeat is a symptom of echinococcosis of the brain
Rare heartbeat is a symptom of echinococcosis of the brain

A rare heartbeat is a symptom of echinococcosis of the brain.

Echinococci most often cause damage to the lining of the brain (meningitis). Drowsiness occurs
Echinococci most often cause damage to the lining of the brain (meningitis). Drowsiness occurs

Echinococci most often cause damage to the lining of the brain (meningitis). Drowsiness occurs.

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Sometimes paresis of the facial nerve develops. If the outflow of cerebrospinal fluid is difficult, symptoms of intracranial hypertension appear. When the 4 ventricles of the brain are affected by parasites, Bruns syndrome develops. It manifests itself as severe headache, pale skin, shortness of breath, vomiting, tonic seizures, and bulbar symptoms such as dysarthria (speech impairment) and dysphagia (difficulty swallowing).

Diagnostics

If you suspect the presence of parasites in the brain, you need:

  • neurological examination;
  • interview;
  • physical research;
  • general clinical analyzes;
  • analysis of cerebrospinal fluid;
  • CT or MRI;
  • radiography;
  • immunological tests;
  • ophthalmoscopy;
  • electroencephalography;
  • allergic tests.
X-rays are prescribed to investigate the presence of parasites in the brain
X-rays are prescribed to investigate the presence of parasites in the brain

X-rays are prescribed to examine the presence of parasites in the brain.

MRI is used to diagnose parasites in the brain
MRI is used to diagnose parasites in the brain

MRI is used to diagnose parasites in the brain.

If parasites are suspected in the brain, general clinical tests are required
If parasites are suspected in the brain, general clinical tests are required

If parasites are suspected in the brain, general clinical tests are required.

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Patients need to be treated after examining the internal organs (liver, lungs). Trepanobiopsy is possible. With helminthic invasion, myelography (bone marrow examination) is informative. If a cyst is found, a puncture is performed.

How to remove brain parasites

When parasites are detected in the brain, antihelminthic or antiprotozoal drugs are prescribed. Most often used:

  • anthelmintic drugs;
  • corticosteroids;
  • pain relievers;
  • diuretics;
  • anticonvulsants;
  • sorbents;
  • antihistamines.
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When parasites are detected in the brain, antihelminthic or antiprotozoal drugs are prescribed.

If during bathing or eating meat a person becomes infected with echinococcus, then drugs based on albendazole (Nemozole) are prescribed. The cysts are removed surgically. During the rehabilitation period, drugs are shown that improve blood circulation and metabolism in the nervous tissue. If surgical intervention is impossible, Vermox or Vormin is used.

Prevention of the disease

To prevent the penetration of parasites into the brain, you need to adhere to the following rules:

  • follow simple rules of personal hygiene;
  • subject meat to veterinary and sanitary examination;
  • examine people from risk groups;
  • wash herbs, berries, fruits and vegetables thoroughly before eating them;
  • walk dogs in the right place;
  • prevent contamination of water and land in the garden with animal faeces;
  • boil water before drinking;
  • conduct epidemiological surveillance over the activities of meat processing enterprises and shops;
  • put on overalls when cutting carcasses of killed animals;
  • subject meat to sufficient heat treatment.
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To prevent parasites from entering the brain, you need to follow simple rules of personal hygiene.

Before entering the outlets, meat must be examined for Finns and Trichinella. This avoids mass contamination. Taking good care of your pets is essential. It involves deworming at least once a year.

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