Fasciola hepatica

Fasciola hepatica is a Trematode that causes Fascioliasis or sheep liver fluke disease.

Diagnosis / Pathology

Fasciola hepatica

Location in the Host

Fasciola hepatica is located in the bile ducts of the liver

Geographic Distribution

Fasciola hepatica has a worldwide distribution but is most common in areas where there is sheep-raising and cattle-raising as these two serve as reservoir hosts.

Life Cycle

Fasciola hepatica

Morphology & Diagnosis

Fasciola hepatica eggs are large at 130-150u long by 63-90u wide and are found in the feces during an ova & parasite examination. They have an ellipsoid shape to them and have a small and indistinct operculum. Gentle tapping of a Lugol’s iodine prep of concentrated feces can cause the operculum to “pop” open. The eggs are unembryonated in the passed feces.

Adults are rarely seen but for findings during surgery or their presence detected by biopsy.


Adult Fasciola hepatica fluke – Photo by W. Vientos
F. hepatica and F. busk eggs illustration how similar they are in appearance