General İnfo

Elephantiasis – a parasitic infection

Elephantiasis is a disease, which can cause extreme swelling in the legs and arms. A filarial worm that is transmitted causes this disease to humans when any female mosquito bites that person and sucks his/her blood.

The legs are affected with this disease

The legs are affected with this disease

The parasite then grows into adult worms and lives in the human lymphatic systems. They are characterized by thickening of the skin.

This is a condition that has another name, which is lymphatic filariasis. The cause of this condition is filarial worms. The disease has some rather distinguishable characteristics, an example of which is that the skin of the affected person gets thickened. The filarial worm that is the cause of this condition is believed to be transmissible from a person to another. The primary medium of transmission of this disease is female mosquitoes. The transmission happens when they bite a person after having sucked the infected person’s blood.



Symptoms and causes

The filarial worm causes the disease. Mosquitos take the parasite’s larvae when they feed. When the larvae reach the third level of development, they are introduced to new hosts. They then develop the infection.

Symptoms of this disease include gross enlargement as well as swelling of areas of the body due to the fluid accumulating in the body. The arms and legs swell several times. The affected area’s skin become thickened, and a takes on a dry pebbly appearance. They may turn ulcerated, darkened and pitted. There are also signs of fever and feelings of ill health present in the affected individual. In a male, enlargement of the Scrotum, thickening of the spermatic cords and also burning sensation and pain, might happen.


A person suffering from Elephantiasis

A person suffering from Elephantiasis

Diagnosis of this disease is made through clinical evaluations. Treatment involves treating the symptoms. They are treated with diethylcarbamazine, doxycycline, and azithromycin. In some cases, medical therapies are not sufficient, and surgery is mandatory. Reconstructive surgery on penis and scrotum has given great results. Anti-streptococcal antibiotics are used for the relief of secondary infections.

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