Ascaris lumbricoides

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AscarisA species of helminth that is unsuitable for helminthic therapy, e.g., [[Ascaris lumbricoides | Ascaris lumbricoides]]. species are not suitable for use in helminthic therapyThe reintroduction to the digestive tract of a controlled number of specially domesticated, mutualistic helminths (intestinal worms) in the form of microscopic eggs or larvae to reconstitute a depleted biome to treat and prevent chronic inflammation, autoimmune disease and other immunological disorders including allergy..

While AscarisA species of helminth that is unsuitable for helminthic therapy, e.g., [[Ascaris lumbricoides | Ascaris lumbricoides]]. lumbricoides (the "giant roundworm" of humans) was estimated to infect approximately 1.2 billion people (20% of the worlds population) in 2005, according to the World Health Organisation, [1] it is not risk-free.

  • A. lumbricoides grows up to 35 cm (14 in) in length and up to 6 mm (0.2 in) wide, making it the largest parasitic worm in humans. Its large surface area might make it a very effective immune modulator, but it’s size is also a potential threat since tangles of AscarisA species of helminth that is unsuitable for helminthic therapy, e.g., [[Ascaris lumbricoides | Ascaris lumbricoides]]. can cause a blockage of the bowel that might require surgery. This is of particular concern for anyone with Crohn’s disease who might have intestinal strictures that could become blocked by even a single ascaris.
  • A. lumbricoides can cause bowel necrosis, bowel perforation and, less frequently, obstruction of the bile duct.
  • A. lumbricoides colonisation might be associated with a disturbed microbiotaThe specific population of microorganisms living in a certain part of the body, such as the gut. "Microbiome" refers to all the microorganisms living in and on the body, or the genome of these microorganisms. These two terms are often used interchangeably. with reduced overall diversity. [2]
  • AscarisA species of helminth that is unsuitable for helminthic therapy, e.g., [[Ascaris lumbricoides | Ascaris lumbricoides]]. species in general are associated with an increase in allergy, and this has been linked to cross-reactivity between worm proteins (e.g., tropomyosins) and highly similar molecules in dust-mites and insects. [3]
  • AscarisA species of helminth that is unsuitable for helminthic therapy, e.g., [[Ascaris lumbricoides | Ascaris lumbricoides]]. roundworms are also known to significantly increase the risk of asthma. [4] [5] [6] [7]
  • There is a risk of mis-migration with some ascaris species.
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Occasionally an adult will migrate to the stomach and cause nausea, and sometimes vomiting. In these cases, the human host can expel the worm in the vomit. (Expelled worms as big as 1 ft long have been reported.) Worms that reach the esophagus while a person is asleep can exit the body through the nose or mouth. Instances have been reported in which AscarisA species of helminth that is unsuitable for helminthic therapy, e.g., [[Ascaris lumbricoides | Ascaris lumbricoides]]. have migrated into and blocked the bile or pancreatic duct or in which the worms have penetrated the small intestine resulting in acute (and fatal) peritonitis. [8]

Mis-migration in humans is a particular risk with AscarisA species of helminth that is unsuitable for helminthic therapy, e.g., [[Ascaris lumbricoides | Ascaris lumbricoides]]. species that are adapted to living in other animals. For example, the roundworms of dogs and raccoons are well known for migration through the brain and eyes of the wrong species. [9]

  • AscarisA species of helminth that is unsuitable for helminthic therapy, e.g., [[Ascaris lumbricoides | Ascaris lumbricoides]]. species have an aversion to some general anaesthetics and may exit the body, sometimes through the mouth, when an infected individual is put under general anaesthesia. [10]
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… numerous cases have been documented where patients in surgical recovery rooms have had worms migrate from the small intestine, through the stomach, and out the patient's nose or mouth. [11]

In view of these issues, ascaris species are unsuitable for use in helminthic therapyThe reintroduction to the digestive tract of a controlled number of specially domesticated, mutualistic helminths (intestinal worms) in the form of microscopic eggs or larvae to reconstitute a depleted biome to treat and prevent chronic inflammation, autoimmune disease and other immunological disorders including allergy. and, if one is acquired accidentally, it would arguably be sensible to terminate it.

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