Dracunculiasis (guineaworm infestation), Biology

Dracunculiasis (guineaworm infestation)

Dracunculiasis, a disease of man, which has been known since antiquity, is caused by the nematode parasite Dracunculus medinesis. The parasite is commonly known as guineaworm.

The adult parasites inhabit the subcutaneous tissues mainly of the legs, the head and the neck. The mature female parasite forces its anterior end into the dermis, thus inducing oedematous swelling, inflammatory reaction, and blister formation. Upon contact with water the blister ruptures, and from the uterus of the female large number of larvae are released. After deposition of larvae the female dies and is absorbed by the tissues.The larvae may remain active in the water for 3-6 days. Further development takes place in a suitable intermediate host, the crustacea, Cyclops. These commonly inhabit water-sources such as ponds and wells. Infected Cyclops may survive for several months. Man acquires the infection by drinking water containing infected intermediate host. In the human body the parasites are released in the gut and penetrate the duodenal wall. Subsequently they migrate via the abdominal mesenteries to the subcutaneous tissue of various parts of the body. The mature female emerges 10-14 months after  infection.

Epidemiology: The term guineaworm or medina worm implies that the disease occurred in some specific locations in the past. Today, disease occurs in the East, West and North of Africa, in the Middle East, India, Iran and Pakistan.Dracunculiasis is prevalent in areas with a dry climate or with an extended dry season. Peak transmission occurs during the dry season, when the water levels of drinking – water sources are low and the dry density of infected intermediate hosts is high.Besides man, animals such as carnivores, cattle, and horses also get infected with D. medinesis. Dogs are most frequently infected. Dogs and other animals may act as reservoir hosts.

Clinical features:
The infection is mostly asymptomatic for about 1 year, but clinical symptoms appear when the female migrates to the dermis. Prodromal symptoms are fever, diarrhoea, vomiting and urticaria. Specific signs of the disease are erythema, oedema, induration of the skin, as well as blister and ulcer formation at the sites where the females penetrate to the surface. The severity of symptoms depends on the location of the worm. More severe symptoms are associated with the death of worm or secondary bacterial infection.

Laboratory diagnosis: Diagnosis is based on clinical symptoms, X-ray examinations and immunodiagnostic tests such as immunofluorescence test.

Control and prevention:
The disease can be controlled by the improvement of water supplies – for example, by the introduction of piped water, by the substitution of draw wells, or by the construction of tube well. Chlorination of drinking water prevents the spread of infestation. Boiling or filtering drinking water provides personal protection.

Posted Date: 9/20/2012 3:21:30 AM | Location : United States

Related Discussions:- Dracunculiasis (guineaworm infestation), Assignment Help, Ask Question on Dracunculiasis (guineaworm infestation), Get Answer, Expert's Help, Dracunculiasis (guineaworm infestation) Discussions

Write discussion on Dracunculiasis (guineaworm infestation)
Your posts are moderated
Related Questions
In many tests it is acceptable to read a positive result before the incubation time is completed. why is this not the case with starch agar?

What is the basis of classifying 'cancer? Name and describe the different Categories of cancer. Mention any two approaches for cancer treatment. What is embryo culture? What is

What are the physical properties of Tear Film? Physical Properties of Tear Film: The tear film is a three-layered structure as given below: 1) Outermost Layer: Lipid Layer

Q. What is the salivary digestive enzyme? Which type of food does it digest and into which smaller molecules does it transform the food? The salivary hydrolase is known as sali

According to their morphology how are bacteria classified? Bacteria present dissimilar morphological patterns. A bacterium can be classified into coccus, bacillus, vibrion or s

How are platelets formed? What is the function of platelets? What consequences does the clinical condition known as thrombocytopenia yield? Platelets, also called as thrombocyt

Q. How to Prepare a Key? Let us prepare a key by making a choice of. characters, listing significant and insignificant characters, tabulating these characters and forming dicho

Q. What is Supraventricular Arrhythmias? Such arrhythmia tend to be reduced by the vagal withdrawal accompanying the onset of exercise.This and wandering pacemakers tend to rec

Determine amount of intracellular potassium ions in neuron A Neuron A is a healthy neuron with all the usual ion channels.  When at rest with a membrane voltage of R millivolts

Define Changes in Gluten Proteins during Dough Formation? Initially, gluten is formed when flour and water are mixed together. The proteins in the flour, glutenin and gliadin c