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Worms

Worms

Description

Helminths infect more than a quarter of the world's population, giving rise to much morbidity. [ de Silva N, Guyatt H, Bundy D. Anthelmintics. A comparative review of their clinical pharmacology. Drugs 1997 May; 53 (5): 769-88].

Three types of worms will be discussed: pinworms, tapeworms and hookworms.

Pinworms

Tiny worms which infest the gastrointestinal tract. Once the pinworm egg enters the stomach, the worm hatches and moves down the intestinal tract. It will continue to live in the intestines, emerging from the anus periodically to lay eggs on the perineum. Pinworms primarily infect children especially those who live in institutions.

Tapeworms

Parasites which can inhabit the intestine, embedding their heads in the intestinal wall. The worms then absorb some of the food the person eats, and can grow up to ten meters long. Segments of the worm are passed through the feces.

Hookworm

Infestations are common in populations from tropical countries and some areas of the United States where poor sanitation standards prevail. A hookworm attaches to the intestinal mucosa by the cutting plates or teeth lining its mouth. A single worm ingests one milliliter of blood per day and is indirectly responsible for greater loss through the bleeding site of attachment. Since infestations frequently number in the hundreds of worms, the continuous loss of blood can result in anemia, fatigue, weakness, and stunting of growth in children.
 

Causes

Pinworms
Putting fingers in the mouth after they have been in contact with feces or contaminated linens, clothes, toys, drinking glasses, etc.

Tapeworms
Eating raw or undercooked beef, pork, or fish containing tapeworm cysts.

Hookworms
Walking barefoot in soil contaminated with infected feces.
 

Signs & Symptoms

Pinworms
Itching around the anus
Inflammation of the anal area
Irritability

Tapeworms
Crawling sensation in anal area
Slight weight loss
Anorexia
Occasional abdominal pain
Intestinal obstruction and possible appendicitis because of the long worm segments twisting in the intestine
Anemia
Diarrhea
Apathy
Dizziness

Hookworms
Anemia
Weakness
Fatigue
Stunted growth in children
 

Nutritional Supplements

Structure & Function:
        Detoxification &
        Intestinal Health


---------------------------------
General Supplements
---------------------------------

 

Acidophilus*  
Beta carotene 50,000 IU
Iron*  
Vitamin B complex*  



*Please refer to the respective topic for specific nutrient amounts.

Note: All amounts are in addition to those supplements having a Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA). Due to individual needs, one must always be aware of a possible undetermined effect when taking nutritional supplements. If any disturbances from the use of a particular supplement should occur, stop its use immediately and seek the care of a qualified health care professional.
 

Dietary Considerations

A High Fiber Diet is recommended. Pinworms and tapeworms as a group cause very little disturbance in the host. One exception is the fish tapeworm Diphyllobothrium latum, which can very well cause pernicious anemia by competitively absorbing vitamin B-12. Once the worm has been expelled from the body, the anemia is reversible and treatable by a diet rich in vitamin B-12.

The severity of anemia resulting from chronic hookworm infestation is dependent on the number of worms which inhabit the gut and the nutritional status of the host. Hookworm infection also decreases the intestine's absorption of dietary zinc. Treatment consists of curing the infection with prescription drugs, preventing re-infection by greater sanitation and public education, supplementing with iron and zinc.
 

Homeopathic Remedy

1. Teucrium marum - 30C
2. Spigelia - 30C
3. Santoninum - 30C

Treatment Schedule

Doses cited are to be administered on a 3X daily schedule, unless otherwise indicated. Dose usually continued for 2 weeks. Liquid preparations usually use 8-10 drops per dose. Solid preps are usually 3 pellets per dose. Children use 1/2 dose.

Legend

X = 1 to 10 dilution - weak (triturition)
C = 1 to 100 dilution - weak (potency)
M = 1 to 1 million dilution (very strong)
X or C underlined means it is most useful potency

Asterisk (*) = Primary remedy. Means most necessary remedy. There may be more than one remedy - if so, use all of them.

References

Boericke, D.E., 1988. Homeopathic Materia Medica.

Coulter, C.R., 1986. Portraits of Homeopathic Medicines.

Kent, J.T., 1989. Repertory of the Homeopathic Materia Medica.

Koehler, G., 1989. Handbook of Homeopathy.

Shingale, J.N., 1992. Bedside Prescriber.

Smith, Trevor, 1989. Homeopathic Medicine.

Ullman, Dana, 1991. The One Minute (or so) Healer.

Tissue Salts

 

Ferr. Phos. intestinal worms, passing undigested food;
   
Kali Mur. thread worms, icthcing of anus, white tongue;
   
Nat. Phos. principal remedy, buffers acidosis condition in which worms thrive;


 

Herbal Approaches

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Herbs
-----------


Black Walnut tree (Juglans nigra)
Butternut Bark of Root (Juglans cinerea)
Cloves
Garlic (allium sativum)
Wormwood

Ringworm

Black Walnut

Tapeworm

Garlic
Onion

Note: The misdirected use of an herb can produce severely adverse effects, especially in combination with prescription drugs. This Herbal information is for educational purposes and is not intended as a replacement for medical advice.

Discussion:

For gastrointestinal distress due to worms a number of herbal anthelmintic agents (or vermifuges) are available, often in combination:

Black Walnut and Butternut (or white walnut) have become the accepted "gold standard". Dr. Huelda Clark covers the topic in great detail in each of her books.

Black Walnut may be taken internally, as well as applied externally for ringworm.

Garlic is often added to combat any possible infection from dead, or decayed, worms.

References:

Clark, H.R. : The Cure for All Cancers. ProMotion. 1995.

Hoffmann, D: The New Holistic Herbal. Element, 1983. Third edition 1990.

Aromatherapy - Essential Oils

 

Bergamot Essence, Cajeput Essence, Chamomile Essence,
Caraway Essence, Cinnamon Essence, Clove Essence,
Eucalyptus Essence, Fennel Essence, Garlic Essence,
Hyssop Essence, Lavender Essence, Lemon Essence,
Niaouli Essence, Onion Essence, Peppermint Essence,
Savory Essence, Terebinth Essence, Thuja Essence,
Thyme Essence.    

 

Related Health Conditions

Anemia
Anorexia
Diarrhea
Infection
Parasitism (Parasites / Worms)

Abstracts

References

Ahmed F et al., Vitamin A absorption in children with ascariasis. Br J Nutr, 1993 May, 69:3, 817-25.

Anonymous: Public health impact of schistosomiasis: disease and mortality. WHO Expert Committee on the Control of Schistosomiasis. Bull World Health Organ, 1993, 71:6, 657-62.

Anonymous: Mass therapy is cost effective for controlling intestinal nematodes. Drug Ther Perspect 1995 Nov 13; 6 (10): 14-16

Beeson, P.B. & W. Mc Dermott, eds. 1975. Textbook Of Medicine. 14th ed. Saunders Pub. Co., Philadelphia. 1892 pp.

Bekhti A, Pirotte J. Cimetidine increases serum mebendazole concentrations: implications for treatment of hepatic hydatid cysts. Br J Clin Pharmacol 1987; 24: 390-2.

Berkow, R. 1977. The Merck Manual. Merck Sharp and Dohme Research Laboratories Pub., Rahway, New Jersey. 2165 pp.

Bland, Jeffrey. Medical Applications of Clinical Nutrition. New Canaan, Conn.: Keats, 1983.

Chasroff, I.J. & J.W. Ellis. 1983. Family Medical Guide. William Morrow and Company Inc., Pub. 594 pp.

de Silva N et al., Anthelmintics. A comparative review of their clinical pharmacology. Drugs, 1997 May, 53:5, 769-88.

Hamilton, H.K. ed. 1982. Professional Guide To Diseases Intermed Communications Inc. Pub, Springfield, Massachusetts. 1323 pp.

Heinerman, John. 1982. Herbal Dynamics. Root of Life, Inc.: Publ.

Jamison DT, Mosley WH, Measham AR, et al, editors. Disease control priorities in developing countries. Oxford: Oxford University Press 1993: 131-60.

Jodjana H & Eblen JE: Malnutrition, malaria and intestinal worms in young children. World Health Forum, 1997, 18:1, 21-3.

Kunz, J.R.M. 1982. The American Medical Association Family Medical Guide. Random House Pub, New York. 832 pp.

Luder PJ, Siffert B, Witassek F, et al. Treatment of hydatid disease with high oral doses of mebendazole. Long-term follow-up of plasma mebendazole levels and drug interactions. Eur J Clin Pharmacol 1986; 31: 443-8.

Luke, B. 1984. Principles of Nutrition and Diet Therapy. Little, Brown, and Co., Boston. 816 pp.

Nathan A. Anthelmintics. Pharm J 1997 May 31; 258: 770-1

Pittella JE: Neuroschistosomiasis. Brain Pathol, 1997 Jan, 7:1, 649-62.

Reynolds JEF, editor. Martindale: the extra pharmacopoeia. 30th edition. London: Pharmaceutical Press. 1993.

Robinson, C.H. & M.R. Lawler. 1982. Normal and Therapeutic Nutrition. 16th ed. MacMillan Publishing Company, Inc.,N Y. 849 pp.

Shepard TH. Catalog of teratogenic agents. 4th ed. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Hospital, 1983.

Stoltzfus RJ et al., Hookworm control as a strategy to prevent iron deficiency. Nutr Rev, 1997 Jun, 55:6, 223-32.

Suresh S et al., Ultrasonographic diagnosis of subclinical filariasis. J Ultrasound Med, 1997 Jan, 16:1, 45-9.

Taratuto AL & Venturiello SM: Trichinosis. Brain Pathol, 1997 Jan, 7:1, 663-72.

Warren KS et al., Helminth infections. In Disease control priorities in developing countries. Jamison DT, Mosley WH, Measham AR, et al, editors. Oxford: Oxford University Press 1993: 131-60.

Wasadikar PP & Kulkarni AB: Intestinal obstruction due to ascariasis. Br J Surg, 1997 Mar, 84:3, 410-2.

Watkins WE & Pollitt E: "Stupidity or worms": do intestinal worms impair mental performance? Psychol Bull, 1997 Mar, 121:2, 171-91.

WHO Model Prescribing information - drugs used in parasitic diseases. 2nd edition. Geneva: WHO, 1995

WHO. Health of school children: treatment of intestinal helminths and schistosomiasis. 1995 WHO/SCHISTO/95.112,WHO/CDS/95.1

Wen H, Zhang HW, Muhmut M, et al. Initial observation on albendazole in combination with cimetidine for the treatment of human cystic echinococcosis. Ann Trop Med Parasitol 1994; 88 (1): 49-52.
 

 


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