Echinococcus multilocularis

Echinococcus multilocularis (E. multilocularis) is a parasitic infection in humans primarily transmitted through accidental consumption of contaminated fecal matter of infected canids (coyotes, foxes, dogs). Humans infected with E. multilocularis are typically asymptomatic, displaying no outward signs of infection for the first 5-15 years after exposure, before developing non-specific symptoms such as abdominal pain, malaise and weight loss. If left untreated, the disease is invariably fatal. Important preventive measures include good hygiene practices (especially handwashing) when handling wild or domestic canid feces or after exposure to areas where wild or domestic canids may have defecated. Routine (monthly) deworming of dogs that may be exposed to infected rodents with praziquantel can reduce the risk of patent infection in domestic dogs, as well as within-household exposure to parasite eggs from infected pets. This infection cannot be transmitted from person-to-person.


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Updated 21 Feb 2024