Parasitology research

Factors that influence the shedding of Blastocystis cysts in an irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) patient--an evidence-based case study.

PMID 25982571


Blastocystis is one of the most common gut parasites found in the intestinal tract of humans and animals. We have previously reported the irregular shedding of Blastocystis cysts in stools from infected patients. In the present study, we assess the factors influencing shedding patterns from a Blastocystis ST3-infected IBS patient. The stools samples were voluntarily submitted for examination for a period of 30 days from Blastocystis ST3-infected IBS patient. A questionnaire on the factors that could influence the shedding pattern of the cysts was designed to assess the following information: (a) the frequency of frequenting the toilet in a day, (b) the timing of frequenting the toilet, (c) the stool forms, (d) the type of mood the patient was in when frequenting the toilet and (e) food intake. A total of 79 stool samples were collected for 30 days. The highest number of cysts recorded when the patient visited the toilet three times a day was 22.2 × 10(6) cysts/g. Frequenting the toilet between 6 a.m. to 11.59 a.m. showed the highest number of cysts, i.e. 21.7 × 10(6) cysts/g. Semi-solid forms showed the highest cyst count, i.e. 2.00 × 10(6) cysts/g. Irregular shedding of cysts was seen in 10 out of 30 days where the widest range recorded on day 17 was between 0 to 1.2 × 10(6) cysts/g. The average daily cyst count on days of emotional fluctuations was from 0 to 5.13 × 10(6) cysts/g. In conclusion, the study confirms that there are factors influencing shedding patterns of Blastocystis, and these have important implications when it comes to diagnosis and transmission of the parasite.