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Chapter 4 : The Filarial Infections: Lymphatic Filariasis (Elephantiasis) and Dracunculiasis (Guinea Worm)

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The Filarial Infections: Lymphatic Filariasis (Elephantiasis) and Dracunculiasis (Guinea Worm), Page 1 of 2

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Abstract:

This chapter talks about lymphatic filariasis (LF) and dracunculiasis. Approximately 90% of the world’s LF cases are caused by the nematode parasite . The adult worms live for eight years in the lymphatics. They produce microfilariae that enter the bloodstream and are transmitted person to person through a mosquito vector. The morbidity and pathology of LF result from adult worms in the lymphatics, which cause dilation (lymphangiectasia), obstruction, lymphedema, and, in some cases, elephantiasis. The chronic morbidity and disfigurement resulting from LF exact a huge economic toll, almost $1 billion in losses annually to the Indian economy. Much of this loss is from reduced worker productivity. In addition, the stigma of LF has an enormous but still poorly quantified social impact. Transmission of LF in poor rural communities can be interrupted by mass drug administration of anthelmintic drugs that target the microfilariae. These drugs include diethylcarbamazine (DEC) and ivermectin. Dracunculiasis is caused by the guinea worm, . The adult worm grows to almost 1 yard in length and lives in the subcutaneous tissues of the legs and feet (as well as elsewhere). The adult female worm produces a blister that ruptures in water, with the release of immature larvae. The major tools of the dracunculiasis eradication program (DEP) include provision of safe water, health education, and case containment.

Citation: Hotez, M.D., Ph.D. P. 2008. The Filarial Infections: Lymphatic Filariasis (Elephantiasis) and Dracunculiasis (Guinea Worm), p 39-53. In Forgotten People, Forgotten Diseases. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816339.ch4

Key Concept Ranking

Human African Trypanosomiasis
0.52101344
Infectious Diseases
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Adult Worm
0.40939158
0.52101344
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Figures

Image of Figure 4.1
Figure 4.1

Life cycle of (Public Health Image Library, CDC [http://phil.cdc.gov]).

Citation: Hotez, M.D., Ph.D. P. 2008. The Filarial Infections: Lymphatic Filariasis (Elephantiasis) and Dracunculiasis (Guinea Worm), p 39-53. In Forgotten People, Forgotten Diseases. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816339.ch4
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Image of Figure 4.2
Figure 4.2

What do Stephen Hawking and Mao Zedong have in common?

Citation: Hotez, M.D., Ph.D. P. 2008. The Filarial Infections: Lymphatic Filariasis (Elephantiasis) and Dracunculiasis (Guinea Worm), p 39-53. In Forgotten People, Forgotten Diseases. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816339.ch4
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Image of Figure 4.3
Figure 4.3

The life cycle of the guinea worm (Public Health Image Library, CDC [http://phil.cdc.gov]).

Citation: Hotez, M.D., Ph.D. P. 2008. The Filarial Infections: Lymphatic Filariasis (Elephantiasis) and Dracunculiasis (Guinea Worm), p 39-53. In Forgotten People, Forgotten Diseases. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816339.ch4
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Image of Figure 4.4
Figure 4.4

Clinical infection with guinea worm (courtesy The Carter Center).

Citation: Hotez, M.D., Ph.D. P. 2008. The Filarial Infections: Lymphatic Filariasis (Elephantiasis) and Dracunculiasis (Guinea Worm), p 39-53. In Forgotten People, Forgotten Diseases. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816339.ch4
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References

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Tables

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Table 4.1

Major filariae or filaria-like parasites of humans

Citation: Hotez, M.D., Ph.D. P. 2008. The Filarial Infections: Lymphatic Filariasis (Elephantiasis) and Dracunculiasis (Guinea Worm), p 39-53. In Forgotten People, Forgotten Diseases. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816339.ch4

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