Pinworm infection is the most common helminthic infection in the US.
Although most infected individuals are asymptomatic, perianal itching is the most common clinical presentation.
Diagnosis is made by applying adhesive tape to the perianal area and examining for eggs or adult worms.
Treatment consists of a single dose of an appropriate anthelmintic followed by a repeat dose at 2 weeks.
Pinworm infection is caused by the roundworm Enterobius vermicularis. Infection is largely asymptomatic. The classic clinical presentation is intense perianal itching (pruritus ani) without evidence of systemic inflammation.
History and exam
Key diagnostic factors
- perianal pruritus
- perianal erythema
- presence of worms
Other diagnostic factors
- vulvar pruritus
- school attendance or institutionalization
- thumb sucking
1st investigations to order
- adhesive tape test
symptomatic patients + family members
Michael J. Smith, MD, MSCE
Professor of Pediatrics
Duke University School of Medicine
MJS declares that he has no competing interests.
Dr Michael J. Smith would like to gratefully acknowledge Dr Theoklis Zaoutis, a previous contributor to this topic. TZ declares that he has no competing interests.
Randal Rockney, MD
Associate Professor of Pediatrics and Family Medicine
Department of Pediatrics
Hasbro Children's Hospital
RR declares that he has no competing interests.
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