Causes and symptoms of children infected with helminths

This is an automatically translated article.

The article was professionally consulted by Specialist Doctor I Bui Thi Ha - Pediatrician - Neonatologist, Department of Pediatrics - Neonatology - Vinmec Ha Long International Hospital
Helminth infection is a simple disease but can lead to many dangerous complications for children. Parents need to observe unusual symptoms in their children to detect and treat the disease early.

1. Causes of children infected with helminths

In our country up to 70-80% of children are infected with worms. The causes of helminthiasis are also varied. Children can be infected with worms due to the following reasons:
Eating unclean, undercooked food: Raw vegetables, fresh food (fish salad, rare beef, raw oysters,...) hidden risk of containing helminth larvae such as pork tapeworm, beef tapeworm, liver fluke, ... These are all dangerous parasites and have a high risk of death.
Các món tươi sống, chưa được nấu chín kỹ có thể gây giun sán cho trẻ
Do not deworm: many parents often overlook routine deworming for children. Children are in the stage of development, are active, like to play, their resistance is lower than adults, so they are very sensitive to pathogens. Parents should note periodic deworming for children and other family members to prevent the spread of disease. Playing with pets: Animals are the host of many dangerous worms, so children who often play with pets infected with worms have a very high risk of infection. In addition, the eggs of worms, which are present in the feces of livestock and survive for a long time in the external environment, are also a source of disease transmission to humans. Children's personal hygiene is not clean: larvae of worms and worms not only enter the body through the digestive tract but also have the ability to penetrate through open, scratched or injured skin areas. Therefore, to effectively prevent helminth infections, it is necessary to keep children's personal hygiene, remind children to wash their hands before eating and after urinating and defecating. In particular, the younger the child, the more attention is required, because the child can crawl on the ground and put anything he can get into his mouth. Not keeping the environment clean: Unclean beds, mats, mattresses, playgrounds, etc. are one of the common causes of helminthiasis. Therefore, it is necessary to take hygiene measures such as washing blankets and pillows regularly, keeping the house and garden clean, not defecating or throwing rubbish indiscriminately. Children in contact with disease carriers: people who are sick when playing, eating and drinking with children can transmit pathogens to children. Pinworms are usually transmitted this way.

2. Symptoms of children infected with helminths

Trẻ nhiễm giun kim thường bị ngứa vùng hậu môn vào ban đêm
Children in developing countries, tropical countries, including Vietnam often get worms such as ascariasis, pinworms, hookworms, and trichuris. When children are infected with different types of worms, the symptoms will also be different. In many cases, children are infected with a combination of 2 to 3 types of worms at the same time. Here are the symptoms when infected with common worms:
Pinworms: The most characteristic manifestation of pinworm infection is itching in the anal area at night. Because this is the time when the pinworms go to the edge of the anus to give birth, it causes itching, making it easy for children to lose sleep, bedwetting and uncomfortable at night. In addition, parents can also observe tiny red dots around the anal area due to pinworm bites at the edge of the child's anus. Roundworm: The characteristic manifestation of roundworm infection is Loeffler's syndrome accompanied by shortness of breath with a dry cough. On X-ray, the lung infiltrates can be clearly seen. Children infected with roundworm often have signs of abdominal pain, constipation, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, indigestion, headache, possibly accompanied by edema, rash. In addition, there may be signs such as convulsions, abdominal distension, seizures. Hookworm: Hookworm disease is divided into three stages: in the period of penetration when the larvae pass through the skin, the child has red skin nodules, the nodule is as big as the tip of a needle, causing itching and often disappearing on its own. lost after 3-4 days; In the period when larvae travel to the lungs, symptoms are often subtle, not obvious, there may be a dry cough, no phlegm, hoarseness, difficulty in pronunciation. In the period of full development, the baby has manifestations such as digestive disorders (diarrhea, constipation, duodenitis, ..), anemia. Hairworms: If your baby has a mild infection, there are usually no symptoms. But if severe, the baby may have the following clinical manifestations: abdominal pain accompanied by diarrhea, rectal prolapse, anemia. The current state of helminth infections in our country is alarmingly high. Therefore, everyone needs to take effective preventive measures. First of all, it is necessary to immediately eliminate the habits that make children susceptible to diseases, and build a safe and healthy lifestyle. In addition, parents need to observe abnormal manifestations to promptly detect the disease and do not forget to periodically deworm their children every 6 months.
Routine treatment is aimed at reducing the level of parasitic infections and to protect those at risk for worms. Deworming can be easily integrated with child health days or preschool supplement programs, or integrated with school health programs. Schools should promote education on personal hygiene practices such as hand washing and school hygiene.
To protect children from agents that affect their health, you need to monitor and take them to a doctor when they have abnormal symptoms. Contact consultation and make an appointment with leading national and international pediatric specialists, please contact directly to the website for service.
With many years of experience in examining and treating diseases in children, now the Pediatrics Department at Vinmec International General Hospital has become one of the major health care centers, capable of examining , screening and treatment of many specialized diseases in children. Therefore, if the child shows signs of poor absorption of nutrients, slow weight gain, growth retardation, etc., parents can take the child to Vinmec International General Hospital for examination and support. advice from qualified doctors.

Please dial HOTLINE for more information or register for an appointment HERE. Download MyVinmec app to make appointments faster and to manage your bookings easily.

Patients Stories