Echinococcus granulosus, IgG antibodies
Why this test?
detect infection with the larvae of tapeworms Echinococcus granulosus or Echinococcus multilocularis, which cause echinococcosis.
It is recommended to examine people who belong to risk groups: shepherds, zookeepers, hunters, veterinarians or those who live in endemic areas.
In what cases is it prescribed?
With symptoms of damage to internal organs (tumors of the liver, lungs, kidneys, rarely other organs) and / or allergic reactions indicating a possible infection with echinococcus (provided that the patient has eosinophilia).
According to epidemiological indicators, this is belonging to the group of increased risk of infection with echinococcosis.
Echinococcus granulosus or Echinococcus multilocularis are helminths from the genus of tapeworms that cause echinococcosis (respectively, single-chambered and alveolar or multichambered). Echinococcosis - transmitted from animals to humans. Helminthosis, which is found in people in two forms - single-chambered (in which one bubble is formed in the organs) and multi-chambered (when there are many bubbles). At the same time, various organs and tissues are damaged with the formation of parasitic cysts in them. The source of infection is domestic and wild animals of the canine family (dogs, wolves, foxes, etc.) infected with echinococcus. In their body, the parasite matures into adults, which are located in the small intestine and produce eggs that enter the environment with feces. An infected animal can remain a source of the pathogen for up to 2-3 years.
Moreover, helminth eggs remain viable for a long time even when they penetrate the soil. A person serves as an intermediate host for echinococcus and becomes infected by ingesting helminth eggs contained in the soil, on the fur of animals, and also by consuming insufficiently processed food. The mechanism of transmission of the pathogen is fecal-oral, transmission routes: food, water, household. After the eggs enter the small intestine, six-hooked larvae are formed from them, which attach to the mucous membrane of the gastrointestinal tract and penetrate through it. With blood-borne spread, the larvae are most often introduced into the liver, much less often into the lungs, sometimes into the brain, heart, and kidneys.
Bubbles (echinococcal cysts) are formed from them in the affected organs, which are prone to slow growth. Within several months or even years, single or multiple cysts reach sizes from a few millimeters to 20 cm or more. The severity of the disease and its outcome largely depend on the location of the cysts, their number in the affected organ, and their size. With single-chamber echinococcosis, the cysts squeezes the surrounding tissues, and with alveolar multi-chamber cysts penetrate them.
The waste products of parasites cause sensitization - increased sensitivity to allergens. In most cases, the disease manifests itself gradually, sometimes it makes itself felt many years after infection. This is explained by the slow growth of echinococcal cysts and their location. The single-chamber form with damage to the liver and lungs is most common.
Suppuration and rupture of echinococcal cysts is possible, which leads to serious consequences - the spread of the pathogen from the focus of infection throughout the body or beyond it with the formation of daughter cysts, and in some cases to anaphylactic shock. When a person comes into contact with the causative agent of echinococcosis, their immune system reacts by producing IgM and IgG antibodies. Immunoglobulins of class G to echinococcus appear in the blood in 6-8 weeks after infection in specified quantities.
Their concentration increases and after 2-3 months reaches a maximum, at which it remains for a long time. The degree of increase in the level of antibodies in the blood is closely related to the severity of the disease. After the treatment, a decrease in the level of antibodies is possible after 2-3 months, which indicates the success of the therapy. The basis of laboratory diagnosis of echinococcosis is serological reactions - the measurement of class G antibodies to the causative agent of echinococcosis in the blood.