Skip to Main Content


More than a billion persons worldwide are infected with one or more species of intestinal nematodes. Table 217-1 summarizes biologic and clinical features of infections due to the major intestinal parasitic nematodes. These parasites are most common in regions with poor fecal sanitation, particularly in resource-poor countries in the tropics and subtropics, but they have also been seen with increasing frequency among immigrants and refugees to resource-rich countries. Although nematode infections are not usually fatal, they contribute to malnutrition and diminished work capacity. It is interesting that these helminth infections may protect some individuals from allergic disease. Humans may on occasion be infected with nematode parasites that ordinarily infect animals; these zoonotic infections produce diseases such as trichostrongyliasis, anisakiasis, capillariasis, and abdominal angiostrongyliasis.

Table Graphic Jump Location
Table 217-1 Major Human Intestinal Parasitic Nematodes

Intestinal nematodes are roundworms; they range in length from 1 mm to many centimeters when mature (Table 217-1). Their life cycles are complex and highly varied; some species, including Strongyloides stercoralis and Enterobius vermicularis, can be transmitted directly from person to person, while others, such as Ascaris lumbricoides, Necator americanus, and Ancylostoma duodenale, require a soil phase for development. Because most helminth parasites do not self-replicate, the acquisition of a heavy burden of adult worms requires repeated exposure to the parasite in its infectious stage, whether larval or egg. Hence, clinical disease, as opposed to asymptomatic infection, generally develops only with prolonged residence in an ...

Want remote access to your institution's subscription?

Sign in to your MyAccess profile while you are actively authenticated on this site via your institution (you will be able to verify this by looking at the top right corner of the screen - if you see your institution's name, you are authenticated). Once logged in to your MyAccess profile, you will be able to access your institution's subscription for 90 days from any location. You must be logged in while authenticated at least once every 90 days to maintain this remote access.


About MyAccess

If your institution subscribes to this resource, and you don't have a MyAccess profile, please contact your library's reference desk for information on how to gain access to this resource from off-campus.

Subscription Options

AccessMedicine Full Site: One-Year Subscription

Connect to the full suite of AccessMedicine content and resources including more than 250 examination and procedural videos, patient safety modules, an extensive drug database, Q&A, Case Files, and more.

$995 USD
Buy Now

Pay Per View: Timed Access to all of AccessMedicine

24 Hour Subscription $34.95

Buy Now

48 Hour Subscription $54.95

Buy Now

Pop-up div Successfully Displayed

This div only appears when the trigger link is hovered over. Otherwise it is hidden from view.