Parasitic intestinal infections have long been considered tropical and veterinary diseases. This is certainly no longer the case today. Intestinal parasites are common and this has various causes. We eat more and more uncooked organic food (of uncontrolled origin) such as salads and fruit. That is of course good and very healthy, but unfortunately this also entails risks (such as parasites). In addition, nowadays we taste a lot of foreign cuisines, whose products are sometimes less well controlled. We also make (distant) international trips (to exotic places) through which we come into contact with parasites through the local food, drinking water or animals/insects. A third important cause of intestinal parasites is our way of living with animals and pets. We now live with many people and (domestic) animals close to each other. Many parasites use animals as hosts, which means that there is also a risk of infection here.
If you recognize yourself in these stories and/or if you have unexplained periodic intestinal complaints, it is advisable to request a parasite examination. Parasites can pose major health risks in the long term, making reliable analysis a necessity. NL-Lab’s parasite research is the most extensive and advanced research currently available. You can request this test through your practitioner or directly through the webshop.
What are the consequences of an infection with intestinal parasites?
Intestinal parasites cause similar complaints, including severe abdominal cramps, nausea, diarrhea, etc. A number of species from the NL-Lab Parasite Research and the corresponding syndromes are explained in more detail below.
Cryptosporidium species: diagnostically a neglected child. Cryptosporidium is responsible for at least 40,000 cases of severe abdominal cramps and (watery) diarrhea per year. In addition, nausea, vomiting, general weakness and mild fever also belong to the symptom palette. Since this parasite is a zoonosis (can be passed from animal to human), children (pets, children’s farms, etc.) are particularly vulnerable.
Cyclospora cayetanensis: An infection with this parasite can easily last for two months and is characterized by explosive diarrhoea. An extremely painful condition that makes (social) activities impossible and is therefore a major hindrance.
Entamoeba histolytica: mainly occurs in the tropics, subtropics and in areas with poor sanitary conditions. In addition to intestinal problems, this parasite can also cause problems (abscesses) in the liver, lungs and brain, resulting in pain and fever.
Balantidium coli: This is particularly important for patients with a weakened immune system. This parasite causes duodenal ulcers, which can very rarely lead to intestinal perforation (hole in the intestine). The disease is often accompanied by vomiting, abdominal pain, loss of appetite, severe fluid loss, weight loss, headache, fever and/or nausea.