Parasite Testing

We offer at home parasite tests that includes testing by PCR and microscopy O&P. The methodology includes Gold standard microscopic ova and parasite (O&P) detection and Real-time PCR for the identification of common parasites.

IBS Specialists as featured in the Guardian

March 2024

Parasite Testing UK

SIBO specialist listening to the patient, she is explaining her symptoms

UK Parasite Testing – At-Home Parasite Testing Kits Delivered Across the UK


Why Choose Our Parasite Testing Service?


Are you experiencing frequent diarrhoea urgency, or suspect exposure to contaminated food or water sources? Our comprehensive parasite testing service in the UK offers a non-invasive solution to detect over 60 species of parasites, including common culprits like giardia and cryptosporidium.

Our at-home parasite test kits utilize advanced Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) technology combined with gold standard microscopic ova and parasite (O&P) detection. This ensures accurate identification of parasites, yeast, bacteria, and other gut microbiome organisms from the comfort of your home.


Benefits of Our Parasite Testing Service:

  • Detects over 60 species of parasites, including protozoa and helminths.
  • Non-invasive stool test can be easily conducted at home.
  • Utilizes PCR technology for high sensitivity and specificity.
  • Comprehensive analysis includes examination of yeast, bacteria, and gut flora.
  • Results delivered within 2 weeks for prompt diagnosis and treatment.


Order Your Parasite Test Kit Today:

Ready to take control of your gut health? Simply provide your name, address, and date of birth, and we’ll promptly dispatch your comprehensive parasite testing kit to any location across the UK or London.


Who Should Consider Parasite Testing?
Our parasite testing service is ideal for individuals experiencing symptoms such as frequent diarrhoea, abdominal pain, or those with suspected exposure to contaminated food or water sources. Whether you’re based in London, Manchester, or anywhere else in the UK, our at-home testing kits provide a convenient and reliable solution.


Is this test available on the NHS?

This test is not available on the NHS but will detect over 60 species of parasites. Parasite testing via a stool test is non-invasive and very easy to carry out at home. These tests are functional medicine tests that are not used by GPs or on the NHS. When your results are back, a functional medicine practitioner will be able to help you.

What other markers does the parasite test examine?


Our stool test provides a comprehensive analysis beyond just parasites. It offers insights into various markers crucial for gut health, including:

  • Yeast, such as Candida Albicans and Geotrichum Species
  • Beneficial bacteria
  • Friendly gut flora
  • Dysbiotic or bad bacteria
  • Pathogens like campylobacter, shigella, e-coli, and salmonella
  • Viruses, including Norovirus and Rotavirus
  • Presence of white blood cells, which may indicate inflammation.

How can I order a Parasite testing kit?


Ordering our parasite testing kit is easy. Simply provide your name, address, and date of birth, and we’ll promptly dispatch a kit to you. You can either have it delivered or arrange for collection at our clinic. If you prefer, you can also reach out for a consultation first. Once you receive the kit, collect two separate stool samples on different days using the provided vials with preservative liquids. Ship your samples back to our laboratory. The turnaround time is typically 2 weeks. Remember to discontinue probiotics, antibiotics, or anti-fungals a week before the test for accurate results.

Who should conduct a parasite test?

This parasite test is suited to patients who have frequent diarrhoea with urgency or may have had exposure to contaminated food, lakes or untreated water. The Comprehensive Parasitology stool test as well as other Parasite tests that we offer will also help reveal candida and bacterial overgrowth. These are also common symptoms of IBS.

Pensive young woman staring out of a window with a faraway expression reflected in the glass

What is the best parasite treatment?

Once the parasite has been identified we recommend anti-parasitics to eradicate it.
Below is a list of common herbal supplements used to treat parasites.


Garlic is believed to have antimicrobial properties. Allicin, a compound found in garlic, may have antiparasitic effects. (Source – PUBMED)


Black Walnut hull and its extract are believed to have antiparasitic properties and are commonly used in natural remedies.


Grapefruit Seed Extract: This extract is believed to have antimicrobial properties and is sometimes used as a natural remedy for parasitic infections.


Wormwood, specifically Artemisia annua, has been traditionally used as an antiparasitic herb. It contains compounds like artemisinin, which may have antiparasitic properties. (Source – PUBMED)


Oregano oil contains compounds like carvacrol, which have antimicrobial properties and may help combat certain parasites. Studies have found Oregano to be effective against Blastocystis Hominis. (Source – PUBMED)


Clove oil and ground cloves have been used traditionally as an antiparasitic remedy.


Papaya Seeds: A study conducted in 2007 indicated that Papaya seeds may have some anti-parasitics properties (Source – PUBMED)


Berberine: This compound, found in various plants like goldenseal and Oregon grape, has shown potential antiparasitic effects in some studies.
(Source – PUBMED)


Neem oil and neem leaves have been used t for their potential antimicrobial properties. (Source – PUBMED)

Young woman thinking and worrying

How did I pick up a Parasite?

Most of us may meet a parasite at some point in our lives. They can be picked up through contaminated food or drink, foreign travel, pets, day care centers, swimming pool, lakes, and sex! It used to be thought that Parasites were only picked up in underdeveloped countries but actually parasitic infections are very common in Europe, UK and USA.

Did you know that parasites can be picked up by eating, fish, meat and vegetables? A wide variety of parasites including tapeworms, can be transmitted by eating undercooked fish, undercooked meat and pork and vegetables that have been contaminated by human or animal faeces. The NHS website warns against eating wild salmon as this has been linked to a parasite called Anisakis.

Is Sushi a cause of Parasitic infections?

Doctors writing in British Medical Journal Case Reports have claimed that Sushi’s growing popularity in the West may be linked to a rise in parasitic infections. Experts treated a 32-year-old man, in Lisbon, who was found to have parasite larvae on his gut lining after eating Sushi. In the USA, there have been reports in the New York Times that parasites in Del Monte vegetable trays infected 200 people.

Parasites may also be picked up by swimming in lakes, streams or ponds. Some parasites can be picked from your pets. Unfortunately, parasites are very contagious and can be passed on if you do not wash your hands religiously.

Do Doctors on the NHS test for Parasites? I.e. Does the NHS offer Parasite tests?

Unfortunately parasite tests are not routinely offered on the NHS. This is due to the fact that living standards are notably high in Western Europe and parasitic diseases are often regarded as ‘uncommon and exotic‘. This has unfortunately resulted in a lack of parasitology training within medical schools and not an area that is commonly associated with IBS or digestive symptoms. (Source – Science Direct)

In fact, in my experience symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome are not routinuely linked with parasitic infections. Yet a recent a scientific study (2017) was published in the World journal of Gastrointestinal Pharmacology (Source – PUBMED) linking symptoms of IBS to parasitic infections. The study found a prevalence of parasites including Blastocystis, Cryptosporidium and Giardia in IBS patients concluding that these parasites are likely to have a role in the pathogenesis of IBS.

Several studies have indicated that patients who have symptoms of IBS have a prevalence of parasites.

Some of the parasites that were detected include Blastocystis, Cryptosporidium and Giardia. (Source – Science Direct) (Source – PUBMED)

In another study it was also found that a number of pathogenic parasites (Blastocystis, Dientamoeba fragilis, and Giardia lamblia) may also be involved in the progression and exacerbation of the disease. (Source – PUBMED)

  • 57% of IBS sufferers were found to have a parasite called Blastocystis and 43% had a parasite called Giardia.
  • In the healthy group, only 12% had Blastocystis, and 20% had Giardia.
  • These parasites were sometimes found alone or with other parasites.

When patients do get tested for parasites on the NHS, they often have negative results. I suspect this is because the range of parasites they are tested for are not very comprehensive.

What Parasites can be tested?

  • Anisakis simplex
  • Ascaris lumbricoides
  • Balantidium coli
  • Blastocystis hominis
  • Capillaria hepatica
  • Capillaria philippinensis
  • Chilomastix mesnili
  • Clonorchis sinensis
  • Cryptosporidium parvum (EIA)
  • Dicrocoelium dendriticum
  • Dientamoeba fragilis
  • Diphyllobothrium latum
  • Dipylidium caninum
  • Echinostoma hortense
  • Echinostoma ilocanum
  • Endolimax nana
  • Entamoeba coli
  • Entamoeba hartmanni
  • Entamoeba histolytica/E dispar
  • Entamoeba polecki
  • Enterobius vermicularis
  • Enteromonas hominis
  • Fasciola hepatica
  • Fasciola hepatica/Fasciolopsis buski
  • Gastrodiscoides hominis
  • Giardia lamblia
  • Giardia lamblia (EIA)
  • Heterophyes heterophyes
  • Hookworm (Ancylostoma duodenale /
  • Necator americanus)
  • Hymenolepis diminuta
  • Hymenolepis nana
  • Iodamoeba butschlii
  • Isospora belli
  • Metagonimus yokogawai
  • Paragonimus westermani
  • Pentatrichomonas hominis
  • Phaneropsolus bonnei
  • Pygidiopsis summa
  • Retortamonas intestinalis
  • Schistosoma haematobium
  • Schistosoma jabonicum/mekongi
  • Schistosoma japonicum
  • Schistosoma mansoni
  • Strongyloides stercoralis
  • Taenia spp
  • Toxocara canis
  • Trichostrongylus
  • Trichuris trichiura

What are the Symptoms of a parasitic infection?

Many of the symptoms of parasitic infections are similar to those experienced by patients with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Parasites are a major cause of diarrhoea, even in developed countries such as the UK. Additionally bloating, nausea, pain, constipation, gas, fatigue and skin problems have been reported. Other symptoms that have been reported include dehydration, dysentery, malnutrition and weight loss.

Common signs of a parasite infection include:

  • Diarrhoea
  • Loose bowels
  • Constipation
  • Fatigue
  • Skin rashes
  • Cramps
  • Gas
  • Flatulence

These symptoms may come and go due to life cycles of parasites.

Parasites can latch onto the wall of your small intestine and cause iron and protein deficiencies. You may also feel extremely hungry and experience weight loss and fatigue, this may be due to iron deficiency. Intense anal itching at night has also been reported.

What are the Symptoms of Giardia?

Giardiasis is the most common parasitic infection of the human intestine worldwide. Giardia intestinalis is a parasite that can infect the small intestine. It causes acute, watery diarrhoea but some people do not have any symptoms and are asymptomatic. Many infections resolve without treatment however they can also cause chronic disease. Giardia infections can be linked to irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and onset of food allergies. Stool testing is recommended as 280 million people annually do develop Giardia. (Source)

22 Signs that you may have Parasite


Diarrhoea and loose bowels














Diagnosis of Irritable Bowel Syndrome


Itching particularly at night


Skin rash, rosacea


Anaemia or Iron deficiency




Weight Loss


Insatiable hunger


Became unwell after food poisoning


Became unwell after travel to a foreign country


Close contact with pets or farm animals


Swam in Lakes/ Streams


Contact with Sewage


Churning gurgling noises




Joint pain

What damage do Parasites cause?

In addition to some of the unpleasant symptoms listed above, research suggests that parasites may also linked to food intolerances and allergies. This is because they may cause damage to the lining of the digestive tract. Reactive arthritis is classically seen following infection with enteric pathogens such as Yersinia sp., Salmonella sp., Campylobacter jejuni and Shigella sp., but inflammatory arthritis has also been described following enteric infections with other organisms such as Clostridium difficile, Brucella sp. and Giardia.


Parasites in the UK

We ran an audit and found that parasites proved to be a cause of people’s symptoms in 31% of the sufferers from IBS who have consulted us. They are especially likely to be a cause where the major symptoms are:

  • Diarrhoea or endless loose bowel movements.
  • Abdominal pain.
  • A lot of gurgling or churning accompanied by the first two symptoms.

If the origin of the symptoms can be traced back to a bad stomach upset experienced on foreign travel, it increases the likelihood that parasites are the problem.

Even if the patient has been treated previously by means of a parasite test on the NHS, it is still very important to do a private parasite test that we use because their techniques are infinitely more sophisticated and will almost certainly find parasites in circumstances where an NHS test did not.

Dientamoeba fragilis and Blastocystis hominis are the commonest parasites that we find. The former should be relatively easy to eradicate; the latter can be extremely stubborn. If you have done a stool test in the past that was negative but you feel you match all the symptoms of a parasitic infection, or you had parasites in the past but are wondering if you have fully eradicated them, you may like to get in touch with us to further parasite testing because:

  • We can arrange a sophisticated PCR parasite test for you
  • If that test proves positive, you can finally get treatments that will relieve your symptoms.

A Case History

The problem for patients is that GP’s just do not seem to be aware that parasites can be a major cause of IBS. Nor, for that matter, even more surprisingly do gastroenterologists.

We had a patient in her twenties who has had extremely bad IBS for ten months – so bad in fact, that she has had to be off work for the whole of that time. She has been having diarrhoea up to fifteen times a day (ten times during the day and five during the night). She had been to her GP who suggested it was due to a virus! An exclamation mark is the kindest way I can think of commenting on that particular diagnosis.

Eventually she was sent for a colonoscopy, an endoscopy, a barium meal, and a sigmoidoscopy; these four tests together must have cost the NHS well over £1000 (or would have cost anyone doing them privately a total of about £2,500) and would have been followed by numerous visits to consultants.

What would we have done?

The moment we saw that she had given diarrhoea ten out of ten on our long questionnaire we would have immediately suspected parasites. When we audited 120 successive stool tests that we offer, we found that 31.6% of those patients had parasites. Yet GP’s and gastroenterologists seldom ever seem to consider them when they are investigating a patient with diarrhoea.

The Real Causes of IBS by Michael Franklin

If you would like to read the cover story article we wrote for Positive Health magazine, please see The Real Causes of IBS.

Quality Assurance

We use a number of different laboratories for parasite testing including Genova Diagnostics PCR and Doctor’s Data. The stool test utilizes culture growth testing; this is the international standard for clinical microbiology testing. The benefit of this type of testing is that it enables susceptibility testing to be performed. Therefore antifungals and anti-bacterials will be identified to eradicate pathogenic strains.

In addition to parasites, the test will identify species of yeast of which 65 are Candida species.

The test offered by Doctors Data use MALDI-TOF Technology. This technology shared the 2002 Nobel Prize in Chemistry and is used by NASA to search for life on Mars: in fact, Doctor’s Data also introduced MALDI-TOF to the functional medicine industry.

What are the most common type of parasites?

A parasite is an organism that lives on or in a host organism and gets Its food from or at the expense of its host. There are three main

classes of parasites that can cause disease in humans: protozoa, helminths, and ectoparasites.


These include Balantidium coli, Blastocystis spp. Chilomastix mesnili, Cryptosporidium spp, Giardia.

They are defined as being single-celled organisms that are transmitted to humans through a fecal-oral route. The most common protozoa infections are Giardia, Cryptosporidium, and Entamoeba histolytica and these will certainly require treatment.


These include hookworms and may be associated with diarrhoea unexplained anaemia and skin issues.

Ancylostoma and Necator are associated with iron deficiency anaemia.

Ascaris lumbricoide – Most patients are asymptomatic or have only mild abdominal discomfort, nausea, dyspepsia, or loss of appetite.


These include Taenia spp.

Taenia saginata and Taenia solium- This tapeworm is found in people who eat raw meat.


Clonorchis -Opisthorchis spp Fasciola spp.-Fasciolopsis buski, Dientamoeba fragili


Mayo Clinic – Giardia infection (giardiasis)

Scientific American – We Need to Talk about Intestinal Worms, Jan 29 2019

BMJ Case Reports – Aniskiasis: a growing cause of abdominal pain!

World J Gastrointestinal Pharmacology Ther. 2017 Nov 6; 8(4): 201–207. Published online 2017 Nov 6. doi: 10.4292/wjgpt.v8.i4.201

US National Library of Medicine – Protozoan parasites in irritable bowel syndrome: A case-control study