Giardiasis is a disease that is caused by the parasite Giardia intestinalis. This parasite is recognized worldwide but make especially in the subtropics to many infections. In Europe, this parasite is mainly transmitted by dogs and other mammals. also human-to-human infections occur. About 5 to 8 percent of the Dutch and Belgian population is infected. When only a few people report symptoms. This is also depending on it's own immune system. Severe diarrhea and abdominal cramps are often seen. Treatment is then necessary.
In the small intestine, they will attach themselves by means of a kind of suction cup in the mucosa of the intestinal wall. The reproduction takes place asexually. The parasite simply divides into two. Outside the body of the host, the parasite can not survive for long. Portions of the parasites will turn into cysts. These leave the body of the host via the feces and often end up in the water. In this way again there may be a new infection.
Giardiasis in dogs is indicated by prolonged diarrhea. It is mainly the puppies that exhibit this symptom. Healthy and strong dogs will be less likely to suffer from diarrhea, or periods.
In humans, the symptoms are not as apparent at all. This depends on the degree of contamination and the duration. Many people complain about a light-colored stools which is fat, sticky and often stinks. Often there are cramps present. Flatulence is also seen a lot. It is difficult to recognize giardiasis, because there is often thought of about irritable bowel syndrome or any other infection. When to go about 10 percent of people with prolonged diarrhea turns out to giardiasis. Often comes later for nausea with vomiting, or suffer from heartburn. As a result, there is little or eaten, there remains little food inside.
Also, there will be little food through the intestines recognized as a result of the presence of the parasites. For example, the absorption of vitamins A and D will be made more difficult from food. The absorption of iron and fat will be more difficult as well. This creates a particularly oily loose stools. In all the aforementioned cases, there will usually emaciation and malnutrition occur. For young or infirm persons can have quick results. About 5 to 8 percent of the Dutch population is found to be infected, while it is much higher in other countries.
Treatment takes place by means of antibiotics. This is often enough to kill the parasite. There has to be often be looked at the surroundings. Because the risk of infection is high, they can also partner or children have become infected. Particularly in schools and nurseries a mutual infection is often seen. Therefore it could be that several children at the same time get sick and need treatment.
Giardiasis, Symptoms and Treatment