African sleeping sickness is also called African trypanosomiasis is a parasitic disease of humans and many other animals, African sleeping sickness is caused by an insect thus making it an insect borne illness which is caused by a tsetse fly carrying the African trypanosomiasis parasites. The tsetse flies are commonly found in the sub-Saharan Africa especially in Democratic republic of Congo and is greatly responsible for causing African trypanosomiasis .
These flies when infected by either Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense or Trypanosoma brucei gambiense parasite becomes a part in the African sleeping sickness parasite’s lifecycle. There are many reported cases of African trypanosomiasis and mostly in rural areas caused by an infected tsetse fly bite
African sleeping sickness Transmission
African sleeping sickness is caused by infected tsetse flies (big brown fly) that are a host itself. The fly pierces the skin tissue when it bites and the parasite enters the lymphatic system and passes into the bloodstream from there. African trypanosomiasis can also rarely occur by organ transplant, blood transfusion & from mother to unborn child during pregnancy or at the time of delivery.
Stage two: (when the parasite invades the CNS
(central nervous system)
Disruption of the sleep cycle (It gave the name sleeping sickness)
African sleeping sickness Treatment
Treatment of African trypanosomiasis is available but is highly dependent on the stage of the illness present. Intravenous of intramuscular are used for the treatment of the disease, pentamidine for gambiense and Suramin for rhodesiense parasite.
The risk of acquiring African trypanosomiasis for travelers is quite low but be careful when living or staying in the rural areas of the sub-Saharan Africa or where there is some thick vegetation present. Visitors in the city are usually not at risk of the African sleeping sickness infection.
When we hear the phrase “a man’s best friend” what comes to
most people’s mind are… You’ve guessed it!
Dogs. It doesn’t matter if they are big or small these domesticated
mammals are considered by most as a part of their families. Dogs were the first animal to be domesticated
by humans and were bred from wolves for a long time.
Dogs have pack mentality and are famous for their loyalty that’s
why dogs are used to help many humans in work and some are kept as pets my
people around the world. Their lifespan depends on the breed and the size of
the breed as seen smaller dogs tent to live longer than the bigger ones. Although
dogs are colorblind but they have a magnificent sense of smell and can also
hear a lot better than us.
Parasites in Dogs
Just like any other living creature there are various
parasites can infect dogs such as mites, fleas, worms, and other parasitic
organisms. Worms in dogs and other parasites found in dogs are listed below:
Dogs usually get infected by parasitic worms by either
through air, by mouth, eating infected food such as rodents or through skin
contact when the parasite or its larvae burrow through its hosts skin. Parasite
larvae or/and eggs are almost always present in the infected dogs feces and can
be deadly for humans as well as for younger children.
Roundworms in Dogs
Roundworms are a nematode worm which lives inside its host’s small intestine and can be found in many environments around the world. Roundworms infection in dogs occurs when a dog eats infected food or drink infected water. Roundworms are also present in the soil and can be found in the feces. Roundworms in dogs also pose a possible infection threat to the dog’s owners.
Hookworms are blood feeding parasitic worms which live in
the intestine of mammals such as humans but it also infects dogs. It feeds on
the blood of its host by attaching its hook like mouth in the wall of the gut
and punctures the tissues in order to feed.
Whipworms in Dogs
Whipworms (Trichuris trichiura) are whip shaped parasites known
to infect domestic animals such as dogs and/or cats and children. It is an
infection of the large intestine and is commonly found in hot and humid
climates. Whipworm infection occurs when a possible host ingests water or soil contaminated
by whipworm parasite.
Heartworms in Dogs
Heartworms or dog heart worms (Dirofilaria immitis) are
thread-like tiny worms that are transmitted when a mosquito carrying the
parasite bites the possible host. Mosquitoes play an important role in the life
cycle of dog heartworms as they carry these tiny parasites from one host to
Canine tapeworm infection (Dipylidium caninum) is the most commonly found parasitic
infection in cats and dogs. These are intestinal worms and feeds by attaching
their mouth to the wall of the small intestine just like hookworms does. The
adult canine tapeworm can reach approximately 8inches in length. Dogs can only
get infected by these parasites by ingesting a flea carrying canine tapeworms.
Canine tapeworms depends on the fea in order to complete it’s life cycle
Therefore one should make sure there are not any feas present on our canine
Commonly these tapeworms are not deadly but heavy
infestations can cause serious health issues if left untreated. If your dog is
scooting (itching its rear on the ground) it’s time for a vet visit.
White Worms in Dog
Occasionally dog owners may find small white worms in dogs
poop, it is an oblivious sign the dog is infected with a parasitic worms. Worms
might look white, brown or tan can be large or smaller like rice or noodle and
can be segmented, it all depends on the type of worms that are present in the
stool of the infected pet. Such parasitic worms can also be seen sticking near
the genital area of the infected dog. Make sure to get your beloved dog checked
by the vet as soon as possible and try to keep your pet flea free in order to
avoid such parasitic worm’s infections. Humans can also get infected by round
worms so avoid any contact with the infected dog’s feces in order to avoid
getting round worms.
Worms in Dogs Symptoms
Signs of worms in dogs include:
• Dull fur
• Worms in
stool, vomit or fur
(rubbing its genitals on the ground)
If any of the worms in dogs symptoms occurs be sure to consult your vet at all cost in order to avoid any further damage to the dogs internal organs before it’s too late as heavy number of worms inside the dog can result in some serious health issues and even death. Ask the vet to prescribe any worm and flea prevention medication if it need be.
Can Humans Get Worms
Such parasitic worms can also infect humans if contracted
from contaminated feces or soil and ingested by adults or children and even
when an infected pet dog licks the human as dogs tend to eat their feces occasionally.
Once infection occurs the parasitic worms can cause some very severe damage to
various organs inside its human host such as lungs, eyes, heart and brain.
Neurological signs might start to appear in the infected human host due to
worms being present or trying to make their way in to the brain.
Worms in Dogs
Worms in dog’s treatment is possible and there are various medicines you’re treating vet can prescribe in order to treat the infected dog successfully. Few worms in dogs medicine that the vet may prescribe are as follows:
Piperazine simply paralyzes the worms so all the worms present can pass through the stool. It is prescribed for the treatment of pinworms and common round worms. (Please consult your treating physician before taking poperazine).
Fenbendazole is used to treat intestinal parasites such as common tapeworms, hookworms, whipworms and roundworms in pets. (Please consult your veterinarian).
oxime is a prescription drug and is used to treat various parasitic worm
infections in cats and dogs such as roundworms, hookworms and whipworms. (Please consult your veterinarian).
an anti-worm drug used for treating parasitic worm infection such as hookworms
and roundworms infection as it
interferes with the worms process of multiplying inside the host. (Please
consult your veterinarian).
a also an anti worms medication used specifically in animals in order to
control various parasitic intestinal worms infections and heartworm infection. (Please
consult your veterinarian).