Human intestinal or colon parasites usually fall into four main categories: Protozoa, trematoda, cestoda and nemotoda. Familiar parasites like tapeworms fall under the nemotoda class while pinworms or round worms belong to the cestoda category. A person can get parasites while swimming, through poor dieting or from taking a lot of antibiotics and corticosteroids. Some parasites occur when a person gets candidiasis, which is an over-proliferation of yeast in the colon. There are some common symptoms associated with colon parasites.
People with candidiasis and parasites often have problems with genital or anal itching. Even dermatitis or hives can be caused by protozoa. Some individuals may use over-the-counter products like fluconazole or moconazole to combat their parasite or yeast problem even though the condition stems from an internal infection. The yeast infection may then return a short time later. A doctor will usually prescribe oral antibiotics or anti-fungal medication to eradicate the parasites.
Another sign and symptom of colon parasites is diarrhea. Some protozoa can spur the production of prostaglandin in individuals, which is a chemical released by the body's natural defense system. The release of prostaglandins can cause the body to lose sodium and chloride, causing watery stools or diarrhea.
Constipation, Gas and Bloating
Some colon parasites are large enough to block a person's intestinal tract or bile duct, resulting in constipation. Sometimes, the parasites may also live in the upper digestive tract or small intestines. Their presence can irritate the delicate lining of the small intestines, causing bloating and flatulence.
Certain colon parasites can spread to a person's synovial fluids in the bursa sac between joint bones, creating inflammation, stiffness and pain. Muscle aches and pain can also stem from tissue damage caused by parasites.
A person with colon parasites may eventually experience flu-like symptoms, such as fatigue, malaise, nausea and even vomiting. Colon parasites steal nutrients from the body and can invade virtually any internal area once they enter the bloodstream.
Colon parasites can also cause weight loss, allergy symptoms, anemia, irritable bowel syndrome, nervousness, sleep disorders, excessive hunger and a depressed immune system, which can lead to more serious illnesses and even death.
Diagnosis and Treatment
Anyone who believes they are experiencing symptoms caused by colon parasites should see their doctor. The doctor can do a blood test or take a stool sample to make a proper diagnosis.