Taeniasis is an infection within the intestines by adult tapeworms belonging to the genus Taenia.[2][3] There are generally no or only mild symptoms.[2] Symptoms may occasionally include weight loss or abdominal pain.[1] Segments of tapeworm may be seen in the stool.[1] Complications of pork tapeworm may include cysticercosis.[1]

The life cycle of Taenia saginata, the beef tapeworm
SpecialtyInfectious disease
SymptomsNone, weight loss, abdominal pain[1]
ComplicationsPork tapeworm: cysticercosis[1]
TypesTaenia solium (pork tapeworm), Taenia saginata (beef tapeworm), Taenia asiatica (Asian tapeworm)[2]
CausesInfection with adult tapeworms[2][3]
Risk factorsEating contaminated undercooked pork or beef[1]
Diagnostic methodExamination of stool samples[4]
PreventionProperly cooking meat[1]
TreatmentPraziquantel, niclosamide[1]
Frequency50 million (with cysticercosis)[5]

Types of Taenia that cause infections in humans include Taenia solium (pork tapeworm), Taenia saginata (beef tapeworm), and Taenia asiatica (Asian tapeworm).[2] Taenia saginata is due to eating contaminated undercooked beef while Taenia solium and Taenia asiatica is from contaminated undercooked pork.[2] Diagnosis is by examination of stool samples.[4]

Prevention is by properly cooking meat.[1] Treatment is generally with praziquantel, though niclosamide may also be used.[1] Together with cysticercosis, infections affect about 50 million people globally.[5] The disease is most common in the developing world.[1] In the United States less than 1,000 cases occur a year.[1]

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