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African trypanosomiasis

  1. Causes and spread of the disease
  2. Symptoms of African trypanosomiasis
  3. Treatment of African trypanosomiasis

African trypanosomiasis

or sleeping sickness is a disease of parasitic origin, which is transmitted through the insect vectors. Their roles are tsetse that become infected from animals or infected humans.

Causes and spread of the disease

Researchers have identified 3 subspecies of the causative agents of sleeping sickness

T. brucei brucei


T. brucei gambiense


T. brucei rhodesiense

. Infection of human occurs during a bite by the tsetse fly, which lives exclusively on the continent of Africa near rivers and lakes, and savannas. The tsetse fly transmits the pathogen in the process of bloodsucking. Part parasites enter the bloodstream, but most remains in the area of the bite, where it begins to multiply. On the site of the bite over time, forms a chancre. After that, the parasites spread through the lymphatic vessels and interstitial spaces, falling eventually into the bloodstream, where they continue the process of reproduction.

The risk of infection covers 36 African countries with a population of 60 million. the diagnosis of African Trypanosomosis put several tens of thousands of patients. Through the efforts of specialists who manage every year to significantly reduce the number of diseases, but in regions remote from civilization, the figure remains high.

Symptoms of African trypanosomiasis

The first symptom is a chancre painful to the touch node at the bite site, occurs in up to 7 days after infection. Most frequently observed on the limbs and head, but it can occur in other parts of the body. The chancre may develop into an ulcer, but to spontaneously heal.

Within 2 weeks after infection become visible clinical manifestations of the disease however, in some forms of the disease the first signs appear several years after the bite.

Typical symptoms at this stage, severe headache, fever, sleep disturbances, inability to concentrate. The body appears painful subcutaneous swelling. Lymph nodes are compacted, and in the back of the neck of the triangle is increasing significantly.

Depending on the type of pathogen, possible more pronounced and rapidly occurring symptoms sharp depletion, lesions of the myocardium caused by the penetration of infection into the nervous system. The classical course of the disease there is a gradual progression until the development stage of sleeping sickness

  • sleepy facial expression
  • drooping eyelid
  • pendulous lower lip
  • very low activity
  • lack of response to stimuli.

Treatment of African trypanosomiasis

The type of treatment selected depends on the stage of the disease. In the early stages are prescribed less toxic drugs, so it is very important to diagnose as early as possible (by the way, diagnostics of this disease is extremely complex and requires special knowledge).

In the middle stages require toxic and difficult to use drugs that do not always guarantee a positive outcome of treatment.

For suspected carotid disease after visiting Africa you need to contact an experienced physician-infectious disease. To find the best specialist and make an appointment for an appointment via the website