INFORMATION SHEET ON NEUROCYSTICERCOSIS

INFORMATION SHEET ON NEUROCYSTICERCOSIS

What is Neurocysticercosis (NCC)?


Cysticercosis is an infection caused by the larvae of the parasite tapeworm (Taenia solium). The
larvae get into tissues such as muscle and brain, and form cysts there (these are called cysticerci).
When cysts are found in the brain, the condition is called neurocysticercosis.


What is tapeworm?

Tapeworm is a parasite that lives in intestines of animals and humans. It is a flat worm,
resembling a tape in appearance and hence the name. And as the term “parasite” suggests if there
is a tapeworm in your child’s intestine, it absorbs the nutrients present in the food your child
eats.

Is it a common infection in India?


Yes it is a common infection in India and other developing countries due to poor sanitation of
food and water.

How did my child get cysticercosis?


Children get cysticercosis when they swallow tapeworm eggs that are passed in the faeces of a
human with a tapeworm. It spreads through food, water, or surfaces contaminated with faeces.
Children swallow the eggs when they eat contaminated food or put contaminated fingers in their
mouth.

What are the common foods implicated in causing cysticercosis?


Eating roadside food and raw fruits and vegetables washed with contaminated water can cause
it.Eating pork does not always cause cysticercosis. Chinese food especially those with
undercooked/raw vegetables like cabbage have risk of causing this disease

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