Tropical Diseases Task Force
Diseases of the Tropics
African Trypanosomiasis (Sleeping Sickness)
Lymphatic Filariasis (LF)
Caused by a protozoa Trypanosoma cruzi
About 16 – 19 M people are infected; 50, 000 die each year (CDC/DPD, 2004).
Mostly in Latin American countries. In 1990’s WHO ranked it as the most serious parasitic disease in Latin America.
Trypanosoma cruzi, the protozoan parasite, enters the body through broken skin; Spread by reduvid bugs (kissing bug).
Transmitted vertically from mother during pregnancy or at birth (CDC, 2004).
Receipt of an infected blood transfusion or organ transplant (CDC, 2004).
Contact with eyes, mouth, or open cuts after contact with insect feces; Eating uncooked food, contaminated with insect feces.
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