Question

Parasitic Infections

What are the different types of parasites that infect humans?

A Answers (1)

  • AMehmet Oz, MD, Cardiology, answered
    There are three types of parasites that feast on humans:
    • Protozoa - one-celled organisms that live and multiply in the blood or tissue of humans. They infect the body via mosquitoes and flies and are found in soil and water.
    • Helminths - parasitic flatworms, flukes, tapeworms, thorny-headed worms, roundworms, and pinworms. They live in the gastrointestinal tract, blood, lymphatic system, and other tissues.
    • Ectoparasites - ticks, fleas, lice, and mites that live on the surface of a human host and attach or burrow into the skin.

    There are a host of parasitic infections that cause disease in humans. The effect can range from mildly annoying to life-threatening. Malaria is the most prevalent parasitic disease worldwide, killing more than 1 million people each year. Trichomoniasis, a common vaginal infection, is the most common parasitic infection in the U.S.


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