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tapeworm




A member of a group of intestinal parasites, so named because they are long and flat. Tapeworms form the class Cestoda of the flatworm phylum Platyhelminthes. A scolex, or head, only 1.5–2 mm (about 0.06 in) in diameter, is attached to the gut and behind this the body consists of a ribbon of identical flat segments, or proglottids, each containing reproductive organs. These proglottids are budded off from behind the scolex. Mature proglottids containing eggs pass out with the feces where larval stages can infect intermediate hosts.


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