Taenia solium- Classification, Habitat, Structure, Body wall


Taenia solium is a parasitic tapeworm that belongs to the phylum Platyhelminthes, class Cestoda, order Cyclophyllidea, family Taeniidae and genus Taenia . The scientific name Taenia solium means "ribbon throne" in Latin, referring to its flattened body and ring of hooks on its head.

Taenia solium has two hosts in its life cycle: humans and pigs. Humans are the definitive or primary hosts, where the adult tapeworm lives in the small intestine and produces eggs or proglottids (segments) that are passed in the feces . Pigs are the intermediate or secondary hosts, where the eggs or proglottids hatch into larvae called cysticerci that invade the muscles and other tissues . Humans can also become intermediate hosts if they ingest eggs or proglottids from contaminated food or water, leading to a serious condition called cysticercosis .

Taenia solium is found worldwide, but it is more common in regions where pork is eaten raw or undercooked and where sanitation and hygiene are poor . Taenia solium can cause mild or no symptoms in humans as definitive hosts, but it can cause abdominal pain, nausea, diarrhea, weight loss and malnutrition in some cases . Cysticercosis can cause seizures, headaches, vision problems, meningitis and even death in humans as intermediate hosts .

Taenia solium can be treated with anthelmintic drugs such as praziquantel or niclosamide that kill the adult tapeworms in the intestine . Cysticercosis can be treated with antiparasitic drugs such as albendazole or praziquantel, along with anti-inflammatory drugs and anticonvulsants to reduce inflammation and prevent seizures . Prevention of Taenia solium infection involves cooking pork thoroughly, washing hands and food properly, avoiding contact with pig feces and treating infected people and pigs .