or Congo trypanosomiasis.  . African lethargy. It is also known as human African trypanosomiasis. It is a parasitic disease that affects people and animals. caused by the protozoa of the species Trypanosoma brucei and transmitted by the tsetse fly.

Without treatment. with progressive mental deterioration leading to coma and death. Damage caused in the neurological phase is irreversible.000 people are currently infected.000 to 70. about 37 countries and 60 million people. the disease is invariably fatal. It is estimated that 50. The disease is endemic in some regions of subSaharan Africa.  .

The haemolymphatic phase is characterized by fever. often to tremendous sizes. African trypanosomiasis symptoms occur in two stages: 1. headaches. joint pains. and itching. In this phase is taking place an invasion of the circulatory and lymphatic system by the parasite which is associated with severe swelling of lymph nodes. • • .

• • • 2. disruption of the sleep cycle and night-time insomnia. . reduced coordination. the symptoms include confusion. The neurological phase of this disease also give the colloquial name of 'sleeping sickness„. The neurological phase begins when the parasite invades the central nervous system by passing through the blood-brain barrier.

 The entire life cycle of the tsetse fly takes approximately 3 weeks.  In addition to the bite of the tsetse fly. the disease can be transmitted in the following ways: .

through the handling of blood of an infected person and through organ transplantation. for example. although this is uncommon • Through blood transfusion • Through sexual contact .• From mother to unborn child : the trypanosome can sometimes cross the placenta and infect the fetus • In laboratories: accidental infections.

. bone marrow and. cerebrospinal fluid. blood. The gold standard for diagnosis is identification of trypanosomes in a patient sample by microscopic examination.  Samples that can be used for diagnosis include chancre fluid. lymph node. during the neurological stage.

However.  After successful treatment. Medication used to treat this disorder is mainly composed of antibiotics. all patients should be followed up for two years with lumbar punctures every six months to look for relapse. Patients are usually given a specific antibiotic. . some patients may recive combined therapy includeing more antibiotics.

    The disease is found in two forms. either Trypanosoma brucei gambiense or Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense. Humans are the main reservoir for Trypanosoma brucei gambiense. Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense causes the acute form of the disease. but this species can also be found in pigs and other animals. it causes a chronic condition that can remain in a passive phase for months or years before symptoms emerge. Trypanosoma brucei gambiense is found in central and western Africa. . depending on the parasite. but has a much more limited geographic range.

and killed more than 48. It is endemic in south-east Uganda and western Kenya.   Four major epidemics have occurred in recent history: one from 1896–1906 primarily in Uganda and the Congo Basin. and the differentiation between the subspecies of the protozoa was made in 1910.000 Africans in 2008. two epidemics in 1920 and 1970 in several African countries. all in sub-Saharan Africa. and a recent 2008 epidemic in Uganda. . The disease has been recorded as occurring in 36 countries. The causative agent and vector were identified in 1903 by David Bruce.

who. <http://en.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs2 59/en/>. <http://www. July 2010.1. “Sleeping Sickness.htm>. 2010. “African Trypanosomiasis. .org/wiki/African_trypanoso miasis>. <http://www. 2.” World Health Organization.” Wikipedia.nlm.nih. Oct. 3. “African Trypanosomiasis (sleeping Sickness). the Free Encyclopedia.” National Library of MedicineNational Institutes of Health.wikipedia.gov/medlineplus/ency/arti cle/001362.

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful