Beef tapeworm. Preserved specimen of a beef tapeworm (Taenia saginata), which has grown to considerable length. T. saginata is contracted by eating larval cysts in raw or undercooked beef. The cysts develop into adults, attaching themselves to the wall of the small intestine. The tapeworm absorbs food that has been digested by its host directly through its surface. The worm grows a chain-like stobila consisting of egg-carrying proglottides; these break off and pass out of the host in the faeces to be consumed by a new host. Symptoms of infection include abdominal pains, indigestion and hunger.
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