H. diminuta, the rat tapeworm, has a life cycle similar to the indirect cycle of Hymenolepis nana Hymenolepis nana (Dwarf Tapeworm) Infection Hymenolepis nana, a tiny intestinal tapeworm, is one of the most common human cestodes; the life cycle does not require an intermediate host. Infection is treated with praziquantel or... read more in grain insects. Rodents (primarily rats) serve as the definitive host of H. diminuta and beetles (flour and grain beetles) serve as the intermediate host. Humans can serve as definitive hosts after eating food containing infected grain insects. H. diminuta is 20 to 60 cm in length.
Human infection is usually asymptomatic, it but can cause mild gastrointestinal symptoms.
Diagnosis is by finding characteristic eggs in stool.
Treatment of H. diminuta infection is with praziquantel (1 Reference Hymenolepis diminuta is a tapeworm that can cause intestinal infection in humans. H. diminuta, the rat tapeworm, has a life cycle similar to the indirect cycle of Hymenolepis... read more ). Alternatives include nitazoxanide and, outside of the United States, niclosamide.
A stool sample should be repeated one month after therapy is completed to verify cure.
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