Dwarf tapeworm infection, also known as Hymenolepis nana infection, is the world’s most prevalent cestode parasite. H. nana is more common in regions with warmer climates, such as South Europe, the United States, Russia, India, and Latin America. Infection is most prevalent among youngsters, those who reside in institutions and crowded surroundings, and those who reside in regions with poor hygiene and sanitation. In dry, warm locations of poor countries, infection is most frequent among children aged 4–10 years.

People can become infected by unknowingly consuming dwarf tapeworm eggs, ingesting polluted food or water, or by touching mouth parts with infected fingers. Humans can also get infected by unintentionally ingesting an infected arthropod that has gotten into their food. It is possible for the worm’s full life cycle to be completed in the intestines of an infected individual; therefore, the illness may linger for years.


The majority of afflicted individuals exhibit no symptoms. Patients with symptoms may experience the following:

  • abdominal pain
  • weakness
  • nausea
  • diarrhea
  • loss of appetite

Young children, especially those with a serious illness, may have the following symptoms:

  • difficulty sleeping
  • itchy anus
  • headache

Dwarf tapeworm infection is often misinterpreted as a pinworm infection.


Identification of dwarf tapeworm eggs in feces is used to provide a diagnosis. To determine if you are infected, your doctor will need a stool sample collected over several days.


The drugs listed below are used to treat dwarf tapeworm infection.

  • Praziquantel – is often prescribed in a single dosage to individuals suffering from H.nana illness. Praziquantel is widely used and preferred because of its high viability. According to research, the cysticercoid phase of H.nana’s life cycle is the most responsive to the Praziquantel therapy.
  • Nitazoxanide – is a viable alternative treatment; its effectiveness ranges between 75% and 82%. Niclosamide may also be used as an option. However, treatment must continue for seven days. 

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