Epidemiology and Country Information


Echinostomiasis is endemic in the Far East and Southeast Asia.  Affected countries include Indonesia, Philippines, China, Malaysia, Singapore, Korea, Japan, Thailand, and India.


In Indonesia, human echinostomiasis occurs with an average prevalence of 1% (Carney, 1991). In the Philippines, it occurs at a prevalence of 3% but can reach up to 44% in some areas (Eduardo, 1991). The prevalence of human infections varied from 11% to 65% in Taiwan, while in China, an average prevalence of 5% was reported from the Fujian and Guangdong provinces (Carney, 1991; Li, 1991).  In one part of Korea, human infection was at 22.4% while in another region, it was at 9% (Graczyk and Fried, 1998).  More than 50% of stool samples collected in Northern Thailand tested positive for echinostome eggs.


There is evidence that the disease is underreported and is most prevalent in remote rural places among the poor and women of child-bearing age (Graczyk and Fried; Li).  The disease is also aggravated by other factors such as malnutrition, poverty, poor sanitation, and declining economic conditions (Graczyk and Fried, 1998).