What is Sarcocystis?


What is Sarcocystis?

Sarcocystis species are intracellular protozoan parasites with a requisite two-host life cycle based on a prey-predator (intermediate-definitive) host relationship.

Where is Sarcocystis found?

Sarcocysts are usually found in skeletal or cardiac muscle. Figure A: Sarcocysts of Sarcocystis sp. in muscle tissue, stained with hematoxylin and eosin (H&E).

How is Sarcocystis treated in dogs?

Anti-inflammatory drugs may also be used to manage the pain and swelling caused by the infestation, but in the case of Sarcocystis, the best treatment is prevention. Avoid feeding any meat to your dogs that have not been either heated to at least 158 degrees for 15 minutes or frozen for 1-2 days.

How do humans become infected with Sarcocystis?

In the muscular type, people become infected by ingesting the form of the parasite that has been passed in animal feces (most likely by inadvertently ingesting the parasite when it has contaminated water or food).

Can humans get Sarcocystis?

Parasites – Sarcocystosis In humans, two types of the disease can occur, one causes diarrhea, mild fever, and vomiting (intestinal type), and the other type causes muscle pain, transitory edema, and fever (muscular type). However, most people infected with Sarcocystis do not have symptoms.

Is Sarcocystis a zoonotic?

There is one zoonotic Sarcocystis species in pork, Sarcocystis suihominis, with domestic and wild pigs as intermediate hosts. Two zoonotic species are present in cattle, Sarcocystis hominis, and Sarcocystis heydorni; neither has been recognized in North America.

How do you test for blastocystis hominis?


  1. Stool (fecal) exam. This test looks for parasites.
  2. Endoscopy. If you have symptoms, but the fecal exam doesn’t reveal the cause, your doctor might request this test.
  3. Blood tests. A blood test that can detect blastocystis is available but not commonly used.

What is the definitive host of Sarcocystis cruzi?

Cattle are a secondary host for three major species—Sarcocystis cruzi, Sarcocystis hominis, and Sarcocystis hirsuta—whose definitive hosts are dogs, primates, and cats, respectively. Most reports of clinical disease in calves and cows for which speciation was known have been associated with S. cruzi.

What is the infective stage of cryptosporidium?

Sporulated oocysts (containing four sporozoites) are the infective stage of Cryptosporidium spp and may be excreted by humans or animals into the environment. Oocysts are infective on excretion, thus, permitting direct and immediate fecal-oral transmission. Oocysts can survive for prolonged periods in damp soil.

Can humans get Sarcocystis from dogs?

Sarcocystis infection is common in many species of wild and domestic animals. Humans can become infected following ingestion of infected pork or beef. Though there is no evidence that the species of Sarcocystis that infect wildlife can cause disease in humans, hunters are advised not to consume infected animals.

Is Sarcocystis a protozoa?

Sarcocystis is a genus of protozoan parasites, the majority of species infecting mammals, and some infecting reptiles and birds.