Sparganosis (Spirometra spp.) in Asian Water Monitor (Varanus salvator): A medical implications for veterinarians, breeders, and consumers

Aditya Yudhana, Ratih Novita Praja, Anjani Marisa Kartikasari

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Background and Aim: The high prevalence of sparganosis has been reported globally, especially in Asian countries where the majority of individuals consume raw meat from wild-caught reptiles. In Indonesia, similar cases regarding the high prevalence of sparganosis were recorded from wild reptiles such as snakes that utilized for culinary purposes, whereas, there are no data regarding other species such as water monitor lizard (Varanus salvator), which also provided as daily culinary with a high number of trades. Therefore, this study aims to investigate the prevalence of sparganosis in water monitor lizard (V. salvator), which is frequently utilized as culinary products in East Java Province, Indonesia. Materials and Methods: A total of 313 living wild-caught and captive-bred Asian water monitor lizards were collected from the reptile markets and breeders. All samples were euthanized and observed for the presence of plerocercoid. Identification of the plerocercoid as larval infective stage was made using carmine staining method. Results: The total prevalence of sparganosis was recorded at 69.64%. A total of 393 plerocercoids were collected in which divided 280 (71.24%) infecting muscles and 113 (28.75%) located in subcutaneous tissues. Conclusion: To the best of our knowledge, this study not only recorded as the first evidence but also confirms the role of monitor lizards as sparganosis transmitters in Asia and reveals additional routes of sparganosis transmission in Indonesian reptiles. Local conservation laws should be strengthened to effectively control or ban wildlife trade in traditional markets. Moreover, public awareness regarding sparganosis as a neglected zoonotic disease should be applied to prevent disease transmission in Indonesia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2482-2487
Number of pages6
JournalVeterinary World
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2021


  • Infectious disease
  • Sparganosis
  • Spirometra
  • Varanus salvator


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