Human Subcutaneous Taenia solium Cysticercosis in an Andean Population with Neurocysticercosis

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  • Ecuadorean Academy of Neurosciences, Institute of Tropical Neurology, Division of Parasitic Diseases, National Center for Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Department of Internal Medicine, Yale University School of Medicine, Quito, Ecuador

Subcutaneous involvement by the larval stages of the pork tapeworm Taenia solium in patients suffering from neurocysticercosis (neurocysticercosis) is well-described. It has been a clinical but undocumented impression that subcutaneous nodules are less common in cases of neurocysticercosis in Latin American than in Africa or Asia. We report on the absence of subcutaneous nodules found in a screened population of 2,891 residents of an Andean village in Ecuador with a prevalence rate for neurocysticercosis of 144 per thousand. Thirty-four patients with multiple intracraneal calcifications and or cystic or encephalitic parenchymal lesions of neurocysticercosis were examined and questioned about subcutaneous nodules. Only one patient described nodules and his computed tomography plain films are presented. Several hypotheses are presented as to why nodules may be less common in this Andean community with a high prevalence of neurocysticercosis.