Tape worms (Cestodiasis)


Abdomen swollen
Lower body of fish is bloated and swollen to a considerable degree.
Fish is fading away, looks as if it is starving to death.
Listless and lethargic
Fish moves very lazily in water, much less than normal, lacks interest.
Sluggish movements
Fish moves almost reluctantly in the water.
Growth poor
Parasite infested fish show very slow or no growth, as parasite is taking the food.


Tape worms which are transmitted by live vectors. For some the fish are an intermediate host, for others the definitive one.

Many species. Major ones belong to the genera: Eubothrium, Diphyllobothrium, Proteocephalus, & Caryophyllaeus.

Validation: Dissection of heavily parasitised fish will usually show in the intestine & other organs ample evidence of such infections. Often the fish will pass whole worms, which are good indication of a major infestation.


Untreated will cause large mortalities, with treatment it can be brought progressively under control.


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Control intermediate hosts, to prevent spread of outbreaks.

DNA and RNA diagnostic references

Rapid identification of nine species of diphyllobothriidean tapeworms by pyrosequencing

From Scientific Reports 6, Article number: 37228 2016

Tongjit Thanchomnang Faculty of Medicine Mahasarakham Univ. Thailand.


Dr. Chacko, Jim
Unity College of Maine
Fish Patholgy Dept.

Dr Prescott, Shawn
Fish Disease Dolau Ltd


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