Is Horse Hair Infection Dangerous For Humans?

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Is Horse Hair Infection Dangerous For Humans?
Is Horse Hair Infection Dangerous For Humans?

Video: Is Horse Hair Infection Dangerous For Humans?

Video: Is Horse Hair Infection Dangerous For Humans?
Video: Waxy Film on Skin, Hair Loss Horsehair Nematomorpha Human Parasite Symptoms 1-20 2023, March

A large number of people are interested in the question of whether horse hair is dangerous for humans. This parasite must be understood as a round worm that can live in fresh water bodies anywhere in the world. Since ancient times, there has been a fairly widespread opinion that this helminth enters the human body through the heel in the leg. How does the infection occur, how is the parasite dangerous for humans and how to prevent the infection process?


  • 1 Main aspects
  • 2 Features of the structure of the worm
  • 3 The main stages of development
  • 4 Influence of parasites on the human body

Key aspects

Horsehair in other words is called hairy, it can be 40 cm long, fresh water is considered its habitat. It is elongated and thin, so it is very similar to normal hair that floats in water.

Biologists classify this worm as a special type, despite the large number of common features with parasites such as pinworms and roundworms:

  • elongated body shape;
  • a special cuticle, which has a protective function against the negative effects of environmental factors;
  • longitudinal musculature developed at a high level;
  • almost the same structure of the nervous system.

This division is explained by the fact that the data of studies and observations indicate a large number of differences in the molecular structure of the presented groups of helminths.

Adult hairworms live in water, these parasites are distinguished by a high level of fertility, because one individual is able to lay up to one million eggs, which eventually turn into larvae. Their way of life is usually called parasitic, because they are able to penetrate the body of insects and even their larvae, most often mayflies and dragonflies.


Horsehair larvae enter the body cavity of the selected victim with food or on their own. If the organism of the selected target is small, the parasite inhibits the process of its development and expects the target to be absorbed by a large predator. After that, he regains his development and growth.

Quite often, the presence of a hair worm in the reservoir is noted when the worm is in the breeding stage, because this process is accompanied by the formation of glomeruli, which are difficult to miss. Parasites can twine around rocks, algae and plants.

Features of the structure of the worm

The hairy body consists of:

  • oral opening, which is localized in front;
  • cloaca, which is located behind;
  • the torso, which is covered with cuticles and looks like a musculocutaneous sac.

Horsehair is a parasite, the lumen between the intestines and the fibers of a muscular nature, which is filled with parenchyma, which includes cells and connective tissues. The intestine itself is tubular and consists of the following sections:

  • front;
  • medium;
  • rear.

This parasite lacks systems responsible for the processes of respiration, hematopoiesis and excretion. As for the nervous system, it is localized in the epithelial tissue, it includes a ring and an abdominal trunk, which stretches along the entire body.

Individuals of helminths are divided, depending on gender, into males, which have two vas deferens, and females, in which the excretory ducts consist of the uterus and oviducts

The main stages of development

Since horsehair is a parasite, it looks for hosts for itself. At the initial stages of development, they are crustaceans or insects. After that, they move to other hosts as a result of the fact that infected insects and larvae are devoured by other large representatives. At the same time, parasites continue their development in the cavity of their body.

In order for the larva to become an adult (turned into a worm), it needs to be in the insect's body for almost 30 days. After that, they gnaw the shell of his body, leading to the death of the insect, and enter the environment. In the future, the worms live in the water, being in constant motion, the duration of their life cycle is almost a month. This period of time is enough for them to lay eggs.

Influence of parasites on the human body

Due to the structural features of horsehair, the essence of which is the absence of digestive organs and the need for nutrition.

Adults of this helminth can be seen between the catch of fishermen, because they are localized in almost all fresh stagnant water bodies, swimming in water or at the bottom. Due to the fact that individuals are already adults, they do not need to look for a host body for themselves to carry out the parasitic process. A worm can get to a human or animal organism only through the organs of the digestive tract.


Cases of worms entering the body of snails, fish, animals and, rarely, people are not an exception. The human body is a condition unfavorable for parasites, therefore, worms cannot localize in it for a long time, therefore they do not lead to the development of a disease.

But here, too, a person may have a question whether helminths are a danger and whether they can harm the body during the period of their residence. There is no need to worry about a possible infection with a hairy worm after a single bath. If a filamentous worm is found in a reservoir, its presence only indicates the purity of the water, you should not be afraid of any negative consequences.

If you or your loved ones began to be bothered by any pathological symptoms or there were suspicions that the disease manifests itself in this way, then in this case it is necessary to seek advice from qualified specialists.

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