LCMS Navigation Tree
Minimize Maximize
Web Content Display Web Content Display
Minimize Maximize
Diagnostic Methods
Diagnostic methodsPros and cons
Parasitological diagnosis 
In most cases, parasitological diagnosis is not possible. Muscle biopsy is only recommended in cases for which serology is not conclusive.
At the diarrhoeal stage, adults and larvae may be occasionally found in stool samples.
Molecular diagnosis 
Molecular diagnosis allows the differentiation of newly described Trichinella species other than T. spiralis for which humans can be an accidental host
  • Molecular diagnosis is a new tool for epidemiological studies
Antigen detection 
Tests detecting copro-antigens have recently been developed. They seem to be diagnostically important in the early phase of an infection when serology is still negative.
  • Tests not yet fully validated
Antibody detection 
Many serological tests (in various test formats, of which ELISA seems to be the most sensitive) are available. The use of excretory/secretory antigens is preferred to crude worm extracts. Immunoblotting can confirm the result of the screening test.
Seroconversion occurs 3–5 weeks after infection. Antibodies titres can persist for years after the acute phase of infection. They do not correlate with the clinical course of infection.
  • Tests are commercially available
  • Specificities not fully validated (in our experience, serum from patients with proven fascioliasis and schistosomiasis may give false-positive results)
  • No standardization of serology achieved so far