Atlas of foodborne infections
transmitted by contaminated food and water

Atlas of Patogens Contents Information sources Glossary Administration

Cysticercus celullosae

CZ: cysticerkus
EN: pork tapeworm

Meat and Meat Products


Foodborne Disease:
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Human neurocysticercosis (NCC) is an infection of boths humans and  in pigs with the larval stages of the parasitic cestode, Taenia solium.  This infection is caused by ingestion of eggs shed in the feces of a human tapeworm carrier

Cysticercosis are very rare in Muslim countries.  It is important to note that human cysticercosis is acquired by ingesting T. solium eggs shed in the feces of a human T. solium tapeworm carrier, and thus can occur in populations that neither eat pork nor share environments with pgs.

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Taenia solium is found worldwide.  Because pigs are intermediate hosts of the parasite, completion of the life cycle occurs in regions where humans live in close contact with pigs and eat undercooked pork. 

Symptoms may vary depending on the organ or organ system involved. Human neurocysticercosis (NCC) occurs when the cysts develop in the brain. It is considered to be the most common parasitic infection of the human nervous system and the most frequent preventable cause of epilepsy in the developing world. WHO estimates that cysticercosis affects some 50 million people worldwide and, in endemic areas, causes some 50 000 death. For example, an individual with cysticercocis involving the central nervous system (neurocysticercosis) may exhibit neurological symptoms such as psychiatric problems or epileptic seizures.

Death is common. Symptoms usually appear from several weeks to several years after becoming infected with the eggs of the pork tapeworm (T. solium). Symptoms may last for many years if medical treatment is not received.

Persons travelling to countries where sanitation may be substandard and the water supply may be unsafe. Person


Cysticercus celullosae
Source: Intermediate host with cysticercus cellulosae
Cysticercus celullosae
Source: Life cycle of genus Taenia
Cysticercus celullosae
Source: Neurocysticercosis

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