Sparganosis, infection with plerocercoids of the pseudophyllidean tapeworm Spirometra, rarely has been described in Ecuador. We report the details of a human case of sparganosis identified serendipitously in the course of an abdominal hernia repair. The parasite was found moving freely upon the external oblique fascia adjacent to the site of a direct abdominal hernia. The organism was recovered intact, photographed while alive and preserved for subsequent detailed morphological studies. The presumed route of entry into this patient was percutaneous, after application of a poultice of snake flesh to the site of a painful abdominal hernia. The literature on sparganosis in South America is reviewed. This is the second case of human sparganosis reported from Ecuador.