Symptoms of Human Tapeworm

Key points

  • Most people infected with human tapeworms have mild or no symptoms.
  • Digestive problems are a common symptom of human tapeworm.
  • Passing tapeworm segments in your stool is the most visible symptom of human tapeworm.
Scolex of T. saginata


Most people with tapeworm infections have no symptoms or mild symptoms. Patients with T. saginata taeniasis often experience more symptoms that those with T. solium because the T. saginata tapeworm is larger in size (up to 10 meters (m)) than T. solium (usually 3 m).

Tapeworms can cause digestive problems including abdominal pain, loss of appetite, weight loss, and upset stomach. The most visible symptom of taeniasis is the active passing of proglottids (tapeworm segments) through the anus and in the feces. In rare cases, tapeworm segments become lodged in the appendix, or the bile and pancreatic ducts.

Infection with T. solium tapeworms can result in human cysticercosis, which can be a very serious disease that can cause seizures and muscle or eye damage.