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Human echinococcosis (hydatidosis, or hydatid disease) is caused by the larval stages of cestodes (tapeworms) of the genus Echinococcus.
The larval stage of the cestode (tapeworm) E. vogeli cause polycystic echinococcosis, one of the less common forms of human echinococcosis (hydatidosis, or hydatid disease), in Central and South America.
The adult E. vogeli (up to 5.6 mm long) resides in the small bowel of the definitive host, a bush dog or domestic dog. Gravid proglottids (bisexual reproductive segments) release eggs that are passed in the feces. After ingestion by a suitable intermediate host (a rodent), the egg hatches in the small bowel and releases an oncosphere that penetrates the intestinal wall and migrates through the circulatory system into various organs (e.g., liver and lungs), developing both externally and internally and resulting in multiple vesicles.