Pinworms (Enterobius vermicularis) are
small, threadlike roundworms that commonly infect the digestive system of
humans, especially children between the ages of 5 and 10 years. Pinworms are
parasites that live in the intestines and survive by eating nutrients from the
Pinworm infections are common and spread easily. They are usually
caused by swallowing the eggs of the pinworm after coming in contact with an
infected person or with an object that has eggs on its surface. Infection can
also be spread when a person inhales airborne eggs, but this is rare. In rare cases, pinworm infection persists because eggs hatch outside the anus and
the young worms crawl back inside the body.
Symptoms of pinworms include:
Pinworm infections are treated with
medicine. And treatment can help prevent the spread of infection to others.
Pinworms rarely cause serious health problems.
August 30, 2012
John Pope, MD - Pediatrics & Susan C. Kim, MD - Pediatrics
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