Balantidiasis is a parasitic infection caused by the ciliate protozoan parasite, Balantidium coli. This microorganism primarily resides in the colon and cecum of humans and pigs. Infection occurs through the ingestion of cysts, which can be found in contaminated water or food. Balantidiasis is more commonly reported in regions with poor sanitation and hygiene practices.Symptoms of Balantidiasis may include diarrhea, abdominal pain, and occasional dysentery with blood and mucus in the stool. In severe cases, it can lead to dehydration. This infection is diagnosed by identifying B. coli trophozoites or cysts in stool samples.
The treatment for Balantidiasis typically involves antibiotics like metronidazole or tetracycline. Good personal and community hygiene, along with safe drinking water practices, are vital for preventing Balantidiasis. Proper disposal of human and pig waste is also crucial to reduce the risk of contamination.