It's an essay on Elephantiasis.

Essay by gahottie1916College, UndergraduateA+, July 2002

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I did my report on filariasis, which is more commonly known as elephantiasis. Elephantiasis is the late phase of filariasis. Filariasis is a tropical mosquito born parasitic disease causing obstruction of the lymph vessels. In some people the presence of the worm causes a tissue reaction that causes the lymph flow to be blocked. This blockage produces lymphedema which is a swelling and can eventually lead to a tremendous enlargement of an extremity or organ. When elephantiasis follows repeated infection, parts of the body -- particularly the legs -- become grossly enlarged and the surrounding skin hardens and ulcerates. Certain types of elephantiasis can be treated surgically. Elephantiasis of the legs is usually treated with elastic bandages and frequent elevation of the legs. The leg and foot, may swell to elephantine size. There may be allergic reactions like itching and localized swelling. The body may also react by causing calcium tissue to be deposited around the worm, walling it off and eventually causing its death.

In humans, the mature worm lives tightly coiled in the lymphatic vessels where they reproduce. The female holds the fertilized eggs in her body. Later the embryos, called microfilariae, are discharged alive. An interesting feature of these worms is the periodic swarming of the microfilariae in the bloodstream. In most species swarming takes place at night. The embryos can be taken up by an insect only when they are in a human's bloodstream. They develope into infective larvae in the insect, which is the intermediate host. These hosts are various genera of mosquitoes, notably A?des, Anopheles, and Culex. Within 10 to 11 days after ingestion by a human skin they migrate to the lymphayic vessels where they mature and reproduce. There isn't really any prevention to this disease.


Drimmer, Frederick;