Journal of Laboratory Physicians
Home About us Ahead of print Current issue Back issues Subscribe Instructions Contact Login 
Wide layoutNarrow layoutPrint this page  Email this page Bookmark this page Small font size Default font size Increase font size 

   Table of Contents     
Year : 2012  |  Volume : 4  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 56-58  

Case of lingual cysticercosis and review of literature

1 Department of ENT, Sri Aurobindo Institute of Medical Sciences, Indore, Madhya Pradesh, India
2 Department of Pathology, Sri Aurobindo Institute of Medical Sciences, Indore, Madhya Pradesh, India
3 Department of ENT, People's Medical College, Bhopal, India

Date of Web Publication18-Jul-2012

Correspondence Address:
Arvind Kinger
Department of ENT, Sri Aurobindo Institute of Medical Sciences, Indore, Madhya Pradesh
Login to access the Email id

Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0974-2727.98678

Rights and Permissions

A 30-year-old female presented with a painless solitary swelling at right lateral border of tongue of 2-month duration. Fine-needle aspiration cytology was nonconclusive. Excision biopsy was done. Histopathology revealed cysticercosis cellulosae and parasite visualized in the slide with tongue muscles. Lingual cysticercosis is rare and therefore its literature is reviewed and discussed.

Keywords: Cysticercosis cellulosae, lingual, rare disease

How to cite this article:
Kinger A, Kawatra M, Chaudhary TS. Case of lingual cysticercosis and review of literature. J Lab Physicians 2012;4:56-8

How to cite this URL:
Kinger A, Kawatra M, Chaudhary TS. Case of lingual cysticercosis and review of literature. J Lab Physicians [serial online] 2012 [cited 2019 Dec 7];4:56-8. Available from:

   Introduction Top

The disease is named after the larval stage of Taenia Solium, cysticercosis cellulosae. The common sites of cysticercosis are skeletal muscles, subcutaneous tissues, and brain. The involvement of the central nervous system causes severe symptoms and can be potentially fatal. [1],[2],[3] Although oral involvement is common in swine, it is rare in humans. [4],[5] Literature review has mentioned that only 34 cases of lingual cysticercosis are reported till now. [6] Lingual cysticercosis is rare and not suspected for an isolated swelling over the tongue and therefore produces a diagnostic dilemma for the clinicians. This case therefore is one more addition to this rare group. Excision biopsy was done in this case and the sample was sent for histopathology examination, which confirmed the diagnosis of lingual cysticercosis. We here present a case of isolated lingual cysticercosis without involvement of any other site.

   Case Report Top

A 30-year-old female, presented with painless solitary swelling near right lateral border of tongue of two months duration [Figure 1]. The swelling was progressive in nature, causing discomfort while eating. On examination there was a 3 × 2 × 1 cm well defined pink, smooth, nontender swelling at the junction of anterior one-third and posterior two-third of tongue. General and systemic examinations were within normal limits. Fine-needle aspiration cytology was nonconclusive. Written consent was taken and surgical excision was done under local anesthesia [Figure 2]. It was an encapsulated cystic mass containing yellowish pale fluid [Figure 3]. The postoperative period was uneventful. The histopathological examination revealed cysticercosis cellulosae in tongue musculature [Figure 4]. The diagnosis of lingual cysticercosis was thus established and the patient was advised other investigations to rule out the presence of disease in other parts of the body. CT-scan brain and chest X-Ray were done which confirmed the absence of disease in the respective sites.
Figure 1: Swelling right lateral border of tongue (arrow)

Click here to view
Figure 2: Post treatment picture

Click here to view
Figure 3: Excised cyst

Click here to view
Figure 4: Cystic cavity containing cysticercus cellulosae larvae (H and E, 10×)

Click here to view

The patient was given Albendazole 200 mg TDS for 30 days. One-year follow-up showed no signs of recurrence.

   Discussion Top

Cysticercosis most frequently infects skeletal muscles, subcutaneous tissue, brain, and ocular tissue. [1],[2],[3] The life cycle of Taenia solium involves human as a definite host and pig as an intermediate host. The adult worm lives in small intestine of man measuring 2-3 m in length with 800--900 proglottids. Each gravid segment contains about 50,000 eggs. The worm sheds gravid segments with eggs in the stool infecting pig and man. On reaching the alimentary tract of pig, the eggs rupture, liberating the oncospheres which penetrate the gut wall and reach the systemic circulation. They dislodge into different organs and muscle developing into larvae. Human beings are infected by eating raw contaminated pork containing cysticerci, which develops into adult tapeworm in the jejunum. Autoinfection may also occur by contaminated fingers or direct contact with another human carrier. [5],[7] The worm sheds gravid segments laden with eggs in stool, reinfecting pigs and thus completing the cycle. These are partially digested in stomach, evolving to onchospheres and subsequently penetrate small intestine mucosa to disseminate throughout the body via arteriovenous and lymphatic channels. The clinical manifestations depend on location and number of cysticercosis at particular site. Intestinal infection by Taenia solium could be asymptomatic or may present with epigastric pain, nausea, and loose motions. In the case of neurocysticercosis, a patient presents with seizures and the other symptoms are related to the location and pressure caused by cysticerci in particular the region of the brain. Oral and subcutaneous forms are asymptomatic but are detected early because of their superficial location. [8] Diagnosis is confirmed by the presence of cysticerci on biopsy. Roentgenograms of skull and soft tissues may reveal calcified cysticerci. Eosinophilia may occur in invasive stage.

The treatment depends on symptoms and accessibility of lesion. Neurocysticercosis and multiple cysts are treated with drugs like Praziquantel and Albendazole. [9] Treatment of choice in solitary accessible lesion is surgical excision. [9],[10]

   References Top

1.De Souza PE, Barret DC, Fonseca LM, DE Paula AM, Silva EC, Gomez RS. Cysticercosis of oral cavity: Report of seven cases. Oral Dis 2000;6:253-5.  Back to cited text no. 1
2.Garcia HH, Del Brutto OH. Taneia solium cysticercosis. Infect Dis Clin North Am 2000;14:97-119.  Back to cited text no. 2
3.Ribeiro AC, Luvizotto MC, Soubhia AM, de Castro AL. Oral cysticercosis: Case report. Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Path Oral Radol Endod 2007;104:56-8.  Back to cited text no. 3
4.Wilson AD, Adalberto MT, Roman CB, Ruben DM. Oral cysticercosis: A collaborative study of 16 cases. Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Path Oral Radol Endod 2007;103:528-33.  Back to cited text no. 4
5.Romero De Leon E, Aguirre A. Oral cysticercosis. Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol Oral Radiol Endod 1995;79:572-7.  Back to cited text no. 5
6.Pandey SC, Pandey SD. Lingual cysticercosis: Case report. Indian J Plast Surg 2005;38:160-1.  Back to cited text no. 6
  Medknow Journal  
7.Prabhu SR, Bhatt AP, Vishwanathan. Helminthic diseases. Oral diseases in the tropics. Oxford: Oxford Medical Publications; 1993:126-9.  Back to cited text no. 7
8.Lustmann J, Copelyn M. Oral cysticercosis: Review of literature and report of two cases. Int J Oral Surg 1981;10:371-5.  Back to cited text no. 8
9.Saran RK, Rattan V, Rajwanshi A, Nijkawan R, Gupta SK. Cysticercosis of the oral cavity: Report of five cases and a review of literature. Int J Pediatr Dent 1998;8:273-8.  Back to cited text no. 9
10.Mukesh S, Kacker SK, Kapilla K. Cysticercosis of the oral cavity- A clinicopathological study of ten and a half years. J Indian Dent Asso 1986;58:257-9.  Back to cited text no. 10


  [Figure 1], [Figure 2], [Figure 3], [Figure 4]


    Access Statistics
    Email Alert *
    Add to My List *
* Registration required (free)  

  In this article
   Case Report
    Article Figures

 Article Access Statistics
    PDF Downloaded128    
    Comments [Add]    

Recommend this journal