Roundworms, or nematodes, are parasites that can infect people. They usually live in the intestines. There are different kinds of worms that can cause infection, and they can range in length from 1 millimeter to 1 meter.

Most often, eggs, or larvae, live in the soil and get into the body when you get them on your hands and then touch your mouth. Some can also get into the body through the skin.

Like other parasitic diseases, roundworm infections happen more often in warm, tropical climates. Ascariasis is the most common roundworm infection, and affects as many as 1 billion people worldwide.

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Review Date: 12/9/2014  

Reviewed By: Steven D. Ehrlich, NMD, Solutions Acupuncture, a private practice specializing in complementary and alternative medicine, Phoenix, AZ. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.

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