Dracunculiasis

Introduction

-Dracunculiasis is caused by the nematode roundworm called Dracunculus medinensis, or Guinea worm.

-The Guinea worm is the largest tissue parasite of humans

-the disease is on the verge of being eradicated

-Humans are infected when they ingest water containing infective larvae from crustaceans like Cyclops 

Symptoms & Signs 

-Fever, periorbital edema, wheezing, urticaria, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, dyspnea, blister formation, rupture of the blister with the worm emerging as a whitish filament in the center of a painful ulcer 

-Immersion in water relieves the pain

Diagnosis 

-identification of a typical skin ulcer with a protruding worm

Treatment 

-No drug is effective in treating dracunculiasis 

-Wet compresses, occlusive dressings

-Definitive treatment: Gradual extraction of the worm by sequentially rolling it over a small stick

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