Whipworm infection are common in all warm and moist climate. Hundreds of millions of people have this disease. Children are more frequently and more heavily infected than adults.
The worms live primarily in the large bowel and may also be present in the appendix. The female worms lay thousands of egg daily which are passed in the stools. Without proper sanitary facilities the soil soon becomes infested with these parasites. The disease is spread through food contamination, or by placing contaminated fingers in the mouth while working with the soil. Compared with hookworm this disease is much less damaging to the human system.
However, patients complain nausea, vomiting, constipation, flatulence, a slight fever and headache, and even some plains resembling appendicitis. In a heavy infection the clinical picture is that of a severe anemia with blood streaked diarrhea. This is due to the presence of worms embedded in the mucosa lining the rectal area. The worms are usually found in the stools upon careful examination.
The best drug is dithiazanine, four tablets two or three times a day for five days. Children need correspondingly lower doses. Prevention is only possible by the proper sanitary disposal of feces and education in hygiene. Children and field workers should wear shoes in areas where the soil is known to be contaminated.