Atlas of livestock parasites
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Schistosoma matthei



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Schistosoma matthei
Blood fluke

General Description:
The sexes are separate. Adults range between 9 and 28 mm in length. Males have a groove running the length of the body, in which females are found.

Life Cycle:
Indirect trematode life cycle. Intermediate hosts are aquatic snails. Immature forms hatch from eggs and enter snails. After further development and multiplication, the immature forms leave the snail to swim in water, finally penetrating the skin of hosts. Immature infective forms may also infect cattle by ingestion through drinking water.

Blood vessels; Schistosoma bovis lives in the portal and mesenteric veins, while S. matthei occupies vessels of the intestine as well as the veins of the urogenital tract and the stomach.

Geographical Distribution:
Southern Europe, southern Asia, and Africa.

Blood flukes make cattle raising difficult where the disease is endemic.

Effect on Host:
Adults live in blood vessels but deposit eggs outside them in the wall of the intestines or bladder. Much irritation is caused by eggs. Abscesses form and rupture. Both diarrhea and constipation are seen; blood and mucus are found in feces with eggs. When anemia occurs over an extended time, the animals loose weight. Schistosoma bovis eggs also irritate the bladder wall. Blood may then appear in urine.

Diagnostic Information:

Eggs may appear in feces and urine, depending on species infecting the host.

Reduce populations of water snails serving as intermediate hosts by pumping and storing water for 24 hours or use of water troughs.


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