Gastrointestinal (not liver)

Topic Completed: 1 September 2018

Revised: 5 February 2019

Copyright: (c) 2018-2019,, Inc.

PubMed Search: Whipworm[TI]

Nat Pernick, M.D.
Page views in 2019: 884
Page views in 2020 to date: 638
Cite this page: Pernick N. Whipworm. website. Accessed August 12th, 2020.
Definition / general
  • Whipworm gets its name from its shape - has a skinny end (anterior, inserts into colonic mucosa) and a thicker end (contains eggs in female)
  • Trichuris trichiura
Clinical features
  • Associated with rectal prolapse
Case reports
Microscopic (histologic) description
  • Uterus in posterior end has immature ova
  • Has stichosome composed of multiple stichocytes, bacillary bands (best seen in the anterior end of the worm within the tissue), polymyarian / coelomyarian musculature, strongly nucleated hypodermis
  • Thinner head part is embedded in tissue and larger tail is not embedded
Microscopic (histologic) images

Contributed by Bobbi Pritt, M.D.

Colon at autopsy
shows small
worm-like objects
attached to mucosa

Eggs with polar plugs

Contributed by Bobbi Pritt, M.D. and Heather Rose Arguello

Posterior and anterior end of whipworm

Multiple stichocytes

Immature ova in uterus in posterior end

Virtual slides

Images hosted on other servers:
Differential diagnosis
  • Capillaria philippinensis: both are in GI tract and have trichuroid features of stichocytes and bacillary bands; however, the size and egg morphology are different
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