- Infection with the human whipworm, a nematode (roundworm) formally known as Trichuris trichiura. The third most common round worm of humans. Occurs worldwide, with infections more frequent in areas with tropical weather and poor sanitation practices, and among children. It is estimated that 800 million people are infected worldwide. Trichuriasis occurs in the southern United States. The adult worms (approximately 4 cm in length) live in the cecum and ascending colon (the first part of the large intestine). Female worms in the cecum shed between 3,000 and 20,000 eggs per day. The unembryonated eggs are passed with the stool. In the soil they embryonate and become infective in 15 to 30 days. After ingestion (soil-contaminated hands or food), the eggs hatch in the small intestine, and release larvae that mature and establish themselves as adults in the colon. The adult worms are fixed in that location, with the anterior portions threaded into the mucosa (the lining) of the intestine. The females begin to oviposit (lay eggs) 60 to 70 days after infection. The life span of the adults is about 1 year.
* * *Infection with nematodes of the genus Trichuris. In humans, intestinal parasitization by T. trichiura is usually asymptomatic and not associated with peripheral eosinophilia; in massive infections it frequently induces diarrhea or rectal prolapse.
* * *trich·u·ri·a·sis .trik-yə-'rī-ə-səs n, pl -a·ses -.sēz infestation with or disease caused by nematode worms of the genus Trichuris called also trichocephaliasis
* * *n.an infestation of the large intestine by the whipworm, Trichuris trichiura; it occurs principally in humid tropical regions. The infection is acquired by eating food contaminated with the worms' eggs. Symptoms, including bloody diarrhoea, anaemia, weakness, and abdominal pain, are evident only in heavy infestations. Trichuriasis can be treated with various anthelmintics, including tiabendazole and piperazine salts.
* * *trich·u·ri·a·sis (trik″u-riґə-sis) infection with nematodes of the genus Trichuris, seen most often in humans and dogs. The worm inhabits the large intestine, often without symptoms, although heavy infestations may cause diarrhea, vomiting, rectal bleeding, and prolapse.
Medical dictionary. 2011.