Learn more about Alveolar Echinococcosis &

Echinococcus multilocularis...

It is a small tapeworm parasite whose adult stage lives in the intestine of wild and domestic canids. See below that graphic representation by CDC of its cycle (source: https://www.cdc.gov/dpdx/echinococcosis/index.html).

  • It is important to treat it immediately.
  • Likely, this is not affecting its health.
  • Rarely, it may develop canine Alveolar Echinococcosis, a fatal disease in dogs. If treated early, it can be cured. (recommended reading).
  • It is important to treat it immediately.
  • Likely, this is not affecting its health.
  • Rarely, it may develop canine Alveolar Echinococcosis, a fatal disease in dogs. If treated early, it can be cured. (Recommended reading).
  • It cannot develop the intestinal infection that is the one that will make it shedding eggs and being infectious for you and your family.
  • It could theoretically develop canine Alveolar Echinococcosis, the fatal disease which could be deadly for the dog, but that does not represent a risk for you and your family as the dog would not shed parasite eggs.
  • Alveolar Echinococcosis is the disease caused by the multiplication of Echinococcus multilocularis larvae into one or more organs, more often the liver.
  • This multiplication of the larval stage of the parasite causes tumor-like tissue lesions.
  • Eating fruits and vegetables contaminated with eggs is believed to be the most common mode of infection.
  • Handling contaminated soil (e.g. children playing outside and not washing hands before eating).
  • Ingesting the eggs from an infected animal’s fur or areas in the household which have been contaminated with parasite eggs. The eggs are microscopic and not visible to the human eye.
  • At advanced stages, AE may present with malaise, fatigue, weight loss, right upper quadrant discomfort and/or jaundice. It can take from 5-15 years to present.
  • Early stages of AE are often asymptomatic.
  • The infection can be detected at early stages as incidental findings with abdominal imaging or serologic tests.
  • Make sure you discuss with your Veterinarian adequate deworming protocol if your dogs are at risk of infection (eg. they roam free and they prey upon rodents).
  • Wash thoroughly your own fresh produce and berries before eating them.
  • Wash thoroughly your hands after handling soil or animals that might be contaminated with Echinococcus multilocularis eggs.
  • Pick up faeces after your dog. This will reduce the spread of the parasite eggs and thus transmission in the environment.
  • Owners of dogs free to roam and eat rodents.
  • people who eat fresh produce exposed to fecal contamination from dogs and wild canids in areas where Echinococcus multilocularis is present.
  • Professionals handling wild and domestic canids (eg, veterinarians, animal health technicians, trappers, hunters,wildlife biologists).
  • Immuno-suppressed people belonging to the above mentioned categories are particularly at risk.

Go and talk to your Veterinarian. She/He will know what to recommend.

Go and talk to your Family Doctor. She/He will know what to recommend.

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