Key Information

Appropriate Tests

Swimmer's itch

'Swimmer's itch' ('Pelican itch') can be caused by schistosomes which do not cause systemic disease.

Testing is not required unless the patient has acquired symptoms after risk exposure in a geographical area known to be endemic for Schistosoma haematobium (Africa, the Middle East), S. mansoni (the Middle East, Africa, South America, the Caribbean), S. japonicum (Japan, China, the Philippines), S. mekongi (Southeast Asia) or S. intercalatum (West and Central Africa).

Acute schistosomiasis

The diagnosis is established by demonstration of eggs in urine or faeces.

Full blood count to detect eosinophilia; Schistosomiasis Ab.

Follow up urine or stool examinations for viable eggs should be carried out for some weeks after treatment to ensure cure.

S. haematobium

Eggs can be detected on microscopy of urine; the urine sample should be collected at the end of micturition.

Tissue biopsy (eg, bladder lesion) for diagnosis and to assess development of urothelial neoplasia.

  • Haematuria


  • Proteinuria


  • Thickened bladder wall


  • Obstructive uropathy


S. mansoni, S. japonicum, S. mekongi 

Ova cysts parasites faeces.

S. intercalatum


  • Abdominal pain


  • Blood in stools

Colorectal biopsy - see Rectal bleeding

  • Hepatosplenomegaly


  • Portal hypertension


Go Back

Page last updated:

Copyright © 2021 RCPA. All rights reserved.