ABC Medical Center > Blastocystis hominis

What is Blastocystis hominis?

21:53 - 4 May , 2021


It is a parasitic protozoan that has the power to convert the human and animal digestive system into its habitat, normally without symptoms, but sometimes it can cause colic, intense diarrhea and flatulence, among other symptoms, which can lead to serious dehydration.

Transmission of Blastocystis hominis occurs through contact with fecal matter from infected people and animals, or by consuming contaminated water or food, causing the infectious disease called blastocystosis.

As there are several strains of this microorganism (which is why it is now called Blastocystis spp), it has not been identified if only some of them are harmful or if the disease only affects people with sensitivity to it.

Therefore, they are more vulnerable to its effects. In developing countries, it is estimated that more than 21% of the population has this parasite in their digestive tract.

Signs and symptoms Blastocystis hominis

  • Lack of appetite.
  • Decreased body weight.
  • Itching in the anus.
  • Tiredness.
  • Severe diarrhea.
  • Nausea.
  • Abdominal cramps.
  • Inflammation.
  • Excessive flatulence.

How to prevent blastocystosis:

  • Perform hand hygiene constantly.
  • Wash and disinfect fruits and vegetables before consuming them.
  • Disinfect your kitchen utensils and surfaces before preparing food.

Diagnosis and treatment Blastocystis hominis

Once your doctor analyzes your symptoms and clinical history, they will perform a physical examination and request various tests to determine if it is blastocystosis, since sharing symptoms with other gastrointestinal conditions makes it difficult to identify without diagnostic tests. Among the required tests are:

  • Blood test.
  • Stool ova and parasite examination.
  • Endoscopy.
  • Computed tomography.

When the diagnosis is established, the treatment plan will depend on the severity of your symptoms, being able to combine various medications to obtain a better therapeutic response, such as:

  • Antibiotics.
  • Antiparasitic.
  • Painkillers.
  • Anti-inflammatories.

At ABC Medical Center’s Internal Medicine Department, we offer health care services with the highest quality and safety, from the prevention, diagnosis, timely treatment, and monitoring of infectious, respiratory, endocrinological, dermatological, rheumatic, nephrological, gastrointestinal, and hematological pathologies of both chronic-degenerative diseases and acute conditions, through a comprehensive and multidisciplinary model.


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  • Vichido-Luna MA, Toro-Monjaraz EM, Montijo-Barrios E, et al. Blastocystis hominis un agente patógeno controversial en la génesis de enfermedades gastrointestinales y alérgicas. Alerg Asma Inmunol Pediatr. 2016;25(3):78-83.
  • Durán RCE. Blastocystis hominis actualmente: ¿controversia o realidad?. Acta Cient Estud. 2009;7(3):207-213.
  • Requena-Certad I, Devera R, Agreda Y, et al. Infección por Blastocystis hominis en pacientes pediátricos hospitalizados. Rev Biomed. 1999;10(4):199-208.

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