Chapter

Schistosomiasis: A Global Public Health Problem

Samiha El Katsha

in Gender, Behavior, and Health

Published by American University in Cairo Press

Published in print November 2004 | ISBN: 9789774247286
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9781617970245 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5743/cairo/9789774247286.003.0003
Schistosomiasis: A Global Public Health Problem

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Schistosomiasis is a chronic, debilitating illness, mostly experienced by poor people in remote rural areas who are ignored by the media. It is transmitted in specific environmental settings, in or near canals, rivers, and lakes containing schistosomes and their intermediate snail hosts. When rural people, especially children, first become infected they suffer intestinal disorders, nutritional deficiencies, and debilitation. Three forms of schistosomiasis—Schistosoma haematobium, Schistosoma mansoni, and Schistosoma japonicum—are of global public health importance. They share many features, in terms of biology they are very distinct parasites. Each has its own distinctive vector snails, survival patterns in the human host, pathology, and path of egg excretion. They also differ in their impact on human morbidity (illness), and in ease of diagnosis and treatment.

Keywords: rural areas; schistosomes; Schistosoma mansoni; pathology; morbidity

Chapter.  4714 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: International Relations

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