The most common treatment for tapeworm infection involves oral medications that are toxic to the adult tapeworm. Such medications include Praziquantel (Biltricide), Albendazole (Albenza), Nitazoxanide (Alinia)
Doctor’s prescription usually depends on the species of tapeworm involved and the site of the infection. These drugs are known to target the adult tapeworm, not the eggs. So it’s important to avoid re-infecting yourself.
Treating tapeworm larvae infection may be more complex than treating an adult tapeworm infection.
The adult tapeworm mostly stays in the gut, but the larvae may settle in other parts of the body including major organs like lungs. When a larvae infection finally produces symptoms, the infection may sometimes be life-threatening
Tapeworm Symptoms in Pets
- Diarrhea with excessive mucous
- Rumbling tummy
- Segments of worm found in stool
Human Tapeworm Symptoms
- abdominal pain,
- weight loss, and
- inflammation of the intestine
- altered appetite
- Sleeping difficulties as a result of other symptoms.
- Convulsions in severe cases.
Tapeworms are uncommon in the U.S. The laws on feeding practices and inspection of the animals we use for food are working.
Reduce your risk of tapeworms by washing your hands before and after using the toilet and by following these safety tips.
- Avoid raw fish and meat. Thoroughly cook meat to temperatures of at least 145 degrees Fahrenheit, then, allow the meat to rest for three minutes before carving or consuming. The heat continues killing pathogens during that resting time.
- Freezing meat to a -4 degrees F for at least 24 hours also kills tapeworm eggs or larva.
- Wash hands with soap and hot water before preparing or eating foods.
- Tapeworm infections are preventable, and that starts with good hygiene; always wash your hands after using the bathroom and before handling food.
- Wash your hands with warm soapy water, making certain to lather the soap and rub your hands together for 20 seconds.
- You can also protect yourself by washing fruits and vegetables before eating, and ensure meat is completely cooked before consuming. Eating raw or undercooked pork, beef, or fish raises the risk of getting infected.
- If you suspect tapeworms in a family pet, speak with your veterinarian for immediate checkup and treatment.