About parasites in fish

About parasites in fishWhat associations do you have for the word fishing? Well, of course, the most pleasant and positive. First of all, it’s a relaxation from everyday worries, city bustle, everyday problems. And what are some fishing fees, these hooks, fishing rods, worms. Buying new beautiful costumes. In anticipation of a big catch, we think only about the good: how close our relatives will be when we return from fishing, what new beautiful landscapes we will see. And these evening gatherings around the campfire behind the ear, when every fisherman will praise his fish … Involuntarily you will remember a picture of a famous artist.

But how many wonder what dangers may lie in wait for us after this wonderful pastime? There are quite a few serious diseases in humans that are transmitted through the consumption of helminth-infected fish, such as opisthorchiasis (when eating stroganin), clonorchiasis (when eating fish of the cyprinid family), metahonymosis (when eating raw fish), paragonimiasis (when eating crabs and crayfish) and much more. The most common disease in central Russia that occurs with fish is diphyllobothriasis. This is an infectious disease related to helminthiasis, that is, to diseases caused by parasitic worms, in this case, tapeworms.

Pathogen: Diphyllobotrium latum (broad tape). This is a large tapeworm, reaching a length of up to 10 m or more and consisting of 3000-4000 proglottids (segments). On the head has two long suction grooves-botria. It affects the human intestines, less commonly fish-eating animals: bears, foxes, pigs. The stages of the development of the disease pass with the change of two intermediate hosts. The first are the lower copepods, and the second are the fish (pike, perch, roach, ruff, burbot, trout and others). Fish becomes infected by swallowing copepods that live in water bodies. Human infection occurs when an infected thermally insufficiently processed or not salted fish or caviar is ingested. Especially often diphyllobothriasis occurs when eating pike caviar. Cases of familial infection with diphyllobothriasis with the use of this delicacy are described.

I must say that an adult worm can live in the human intestines for more than 10 years. Susceptibility to this type of helminthiasis is universal, that is, everyone can get sick. There is no vaccination against this invasion. This disease is recorded mainly in areas with freshwater bodies of water. Intense and persistent foci exist in the Baltic states, Karelia, in the Gulf of Finland, as well as in the north of Siberia, in the Baikal region, in the Far East. Attaching to the intestinal wall, the parasite infringes the mucous membrane with its botria, which leads to its atrophy and necrotization. Sometimes, due to the parasitism of a large number of lentets, cases of obstructive intestinal obstruction are described. Often, the disease proceeds without special clinical manifestations. Patients complain of weakness, headache, dizziness, decreased performance, pain in the abdomen or in the epigastric region, stool disorders, rumbling in the abdomen.

What should alert you? First of all, as a result of prolonged parasitization in the human body develops B12-deficient anemia. The diagnosis is made on the basis of the detection of anemia by a blood test and the detection of a broad ribbon in the feces. But most often the patient seeks help as a result of the passage of fragments (segments) of the body of the parasite with feces. With timely treatment of the patient for help, the prognosis of the disease is favorable. It has been widely used for treatment with the essential extract of male fern. If, as a result of deworming (treatment), the head of a wide ribbon is not detected, then treatment should be repeated, since the segments are capable of further growth. Therefore, treatment is carried out in a hospital under the supervision of a specialist. The main point is, of course, the prevention of diphyllobothriasis, as well as other helminthiases, the development cycle of which takes place with the formation of larvae in mollusks, crustaceans, and freshwater fish.

Dear fishermen, going fishing, remember the following rules! PROHIBITED:
– drink raw water from open reservoirs, eat aquatic plants;
– eat raw (stroganina), half-baked, light-salted or slightly baked fish; most of all it concerns fish of the cyprinid family: carp, bream, silver carp, asp, common carp, ram, roach, crucian carp.

All freshly caught fish should be eaten only after heat treatment (cooking or frying for 20-25 minutes). The current belief that strong alcohol kills parasites is a myth. The container for storing fish should be clean. A fish that is suspicious in appearance (with spots, swallowed by mollusks, and so on) must be disposed of, but in no case should it be thrown back into the water. For example, bury it in the ground. Well, of course, do not neglect compliance with sanitary rules. Even while on the water, wash your hands with soap, in the absence of conditions – use a skin antiseptic. It is always easier to prevent a disease than to treat it! Be careful and vigilant, as you can become infected with helminthiasis even if you accidentally swallow fish scales infected with cercariae (larvae).

author Lyubov Spiridonova

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Amanda K. Benson

Author: Amanda K. Benson

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