During November 2000, a collection of acanthocephalans from birds in Quang Ninh Province, Vietnam, included a new genus and species in a new family and order. Pyrirhynchus heterospinus n. gen., n. sp. (Pyrirhynchidae n. fam.: Heteramorphida: new order) is described from Actitis hypoleucos (Linnaeus, 1758) (common sandpiper). The new family combines characters from Polymorphidae and Heteracanthocephalidae, and it includes new features. Specimens of the new species are distinguished from those of Heteracanthocephalidae and/or Polymorphidae by their long cylindrical trunk with anterior swelling, pyriform proboscis with hooks much larger ventrally, brain at the anterior end of the receptacle, specialized tubular cement glands, and elliptoid eggs with concentric shells. A detailed analysis of proboscis and trunk armature is included, and specimens of several species of Arhythmorhynchus Lühe, 1911 (Polymorphidae) were studied for comparative purposes. The proboscis of P. heterospinus is armed with 17 to 20 rows of 17 to 19 hooks each, with anterior 9–11 hooks rooted and posterior 6–10 spines rootless.