What is Strongyloidiasis?
Windowofworld.com – Strongyloidiasis is a parasitic infection caused by roundworm Strongyloides stercoralis. These worms generally live in areas with a tropical climate. Strongyloides worm infection can last very long in the body if not handled properly.
A person can get strongyloidiasis when there is direct contact with soil containing roundworm larvae. The risk of this disease is higher in people who often walk on the ground barefoot or in people who do not maintain cleanliness.
Strongyloides worm larvae in the soil can enter the bloodstream through the skin and carry into the cavity of the lungs. From the lungs, larvae ascend into the upper airway and enter the esophagus.
After that, the larvae are ingested and enter with food into the intestine. There, larvae grow up and lay eggs. New larvae that hatch in the intestine can come out with feces or grow up in the intestine. Usually, larvae that come out through the stool can re-enter the bloodstream through the anal skin.
Various Symptoms of Strongyloidiasis
Nearly 50% of people with strongyloidiasis have no symptoms. However, as it travels in the body, larvae and adult worms Strongyloides can cause symptoms according to the organ in its path, namely:
- Itching and bumps, on the skin of the foot where the larvae enter the worm
- Coughing or shortness of breath, when worms are in the lungs or upper airways
- Upper abdominal pain and pain, when the worm reaches the intestine
- Vomiting or diarrhea and alternating constipation
- Itching on the skin or around the anus, caused by larvae
- Weight loss, because nutrients in the intestine are taken by worms
In more severe cases, strongyloidiasis can cause malabsorption syndromes, paralytic ileus, duodenal small bowel obstruction, and gastrointestinal bleeding.
In people whose immune systems are weak, such as people with HIV / AIDS, cancer patients, or kidney failure, strongyloidiasis that is not treated immediately can spread to various organs, even to the brain. This situation is very dangerous and can be life threatening.
Get to know Strongyloidiasis Treatment
Before being treated, doctors need to diagnose strongyloidiasis first. Examinations that can be done to determine the presence of worms are complete blood tests and stool examination to observe the presence of larvae or eggs of worms under a microscope.
If the test results show Strongyloides worm infection, the doctor will provide treatment aimed at removing the worms in the patient’s body. Drugs that can be given to eradicate worms include:
- Ivermectin, taken once a day for 1-2 days
- Albendazole, taken twice a day for 7 days
- Thiabendazole, taken 2 times a day for 2-3 days in a row
Drug selection and duration of drug administration are determined by the doctor according to the severity of the disease. In severe illnesses, treatment may take longer or be given in a combination of more than 1 type of drug.
Strongyloidiasis can affect anyone, especially those who lack personal hygiene and often don’t wear footwear when walking on the ground. Therefore, always wear footwear when traveling outside the home.
Avoid direct contact with soil, feces, or sewerage that may contain Strongyloides worm larvae. In addition, apply clean and healthy living habits by diligently washing your hands using clean water and soap, especially before eating and after using the toilet.
If you experience symptoms of strongyloidiasis or you lose weight for no apparent reason and it is difficult to go up, you should consult a doctor to get the right treatment.