Schistosoma is a genus of Trematodes that consists of digenes (have two hosts) that have two separate sexes. These also differ from other Trematodes in that the adults reside in blood vessels. Most of the human pathology of a Schistosome infection is caused by migratory eggs that burrow through tissue to find an excretory route to the external environment.
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The life stages of Schistosoma appear similar to those of other Trematodes, with some differences. Females are smaller than males. The adults of the two sexes reside intertwined, with the female 'piggybacking' on the male. The eggs of S. mansoni and S. haematobium have spines that are used to burrow through tissue. The infective cerceria of Schistosoma have split tails.