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What are the Different Types of Hookworm Treatment?

By Sarah R. LaVergne
Updated May 17, 2024
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Three primary medications are used for hookworm treatment. Mebendazole, pyrantel and albendazole are medications prescribed by a physician to treat intestinal worms. These medications are able to kill the worm infestation and prevent the worms from spreading. People looking for a more natural treatment may turn to garlic, black walnut, goldenseal and wormwood, along with a substance known as food-grade diatomaceous earth.

The medication mebendazole is considered an anthelmintic. These types of medication are made specifically for treating worm infections. Mebendazole treats hookworms, roundworms, whipworms and pinworms. Mebendazole comes in two forms — chewable tablets and liquid suspension. The medication is usually prescribed in a dose of 100 milligrams, twice a day for three days.

Mebendazole works by stopping the worms from ingesting the sugar in the human body. When the worm is not allowed sugar, its energy level falls and the hookworm dies. The tablet form of the medication may be swallowed whole or chewed. All medication must be taken completely and for the time prescribed by the doctor to ensure that the hookworm treatment will be successful.

Pyrantel is another anthelmintic medication used in hookworm treatment. Pyrantel comes in chewable tablet, liquid suspension and tablet forms. Pyrantel clears up hookworm infestations and multiple-worm infections that occur at the same time. The medication in liquid form should be shaken so it is mixed correctly at the time of ingestion. A medical measuring spoon should be used in dispensing the appropriate dose.

This medication, whether in tablet or liquid form, is taken as one dose that can be repeated in the future, if necessary. The dosage depends on the weight of the person being treated for a hookworm infection. When a patient takes this medication, the worms are paralyzed and passed from the body through the stool.

The hookworm treatment albendazole is available in tablet form. This medication, like the others, will clear up multiple worm infestations that occur at the same time. Albendazole should be taken with fatty foods and swallowed whole with some form of liquid. All medication should be taken and a repeat dose may be needed in two-week intervals to ensure the entire infection is gone.

Albendazole is typically prescribed at a rate of 400 milligrams, twice a day for eight to 30 days. This medication is similar to mebendazole because it keeps the worm from absorbing sugar in the body. Once the worm is deprived of sugar, it will lose energy and die.

Those hoping to avoid conventional medication and go with a more natural treatment may opt for an herbal treatment, many of which rely on wormwood as their active ingredient. Garlic also is commonly used to treat parasite infections. Other popular herbal remedies include black walnut and goldenseal. Another treatment, food-grade diatomaceous earth, may be used to de-worm both humans and animals, though there is some debate about just how well the treatment works. It is approved for agricultural use as an insecticide and as a livestock feed additive.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
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