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How can I tell the difference between pinworms, thread or toilet paper on my underwear?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2004
Answered : 1773 Questions
I am not sure if I am seeing pinworms, thread or toilet paper on my underwear. How can I tell the difference?
Posted Tue, 11 Sep 2012 in Digestion and Bowels
Answered by Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar 52 minutes later

It definitely cannot be pin worms as they are not visible to the naked eye.

From the other two, thread or toilet paper - It is most often the toilet paper as we see people coming into the clinic panicky about such observations on the underwear. We could find that the thing has a blotting nature. Toilet paper has that property and thread cannot blot.

The second way to know the difference is you would not observe this toilet paper when you once start washing with water instead of toilet paper post toilet.

Let me know if I can assist you further.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: How can I tell the difference between pinworms, thread or toilet paper on my underwear? 38 minutes later
A number of Internet sites say the pinworm IS visible to the naked eye, looks like thread & is the size of a staple.

Assuming all of the above if I touch it or try to put it on tape )as the tape method suggests, are you saying the worm would disintegrate? Therefore no longer being visible?

You mention washing w water.....should I never use toilet paper?
Answered by Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar 24 hours later
Yes, it is not visible and if you try the tape method you should put it under the microscope to see the real structure of it. There are a number of fibres that your daily diet contain and it can be one of it. Second the tape method cannot be done by self, it has to be done by a physician or lab tech to get it right.

I do not mean to say that you should never use paper but using water helps you to differentiate between the two.

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