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Elephantiasis, illustration

Elephantiasis, illustration

C029/6009

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Credit

SCIENTIFICANIMATIONS.COM / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SCIENTIFICANIMATIONS.COM / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Elephantiasis. Computer illustration of the leg of a person affected by elephantiasis, also known as lymphatic filariasis. This disease is caused by parasitic nematode worms transmitted in larval form by the bite of mosquitoes. The larvae develop into adult worms (macrofilariae) that lodge in and block the lymphatic system. This causes lymph fluid to accumulate in the limbs, a form of lymphoedema. Elephantiasis is rarely fatal, but causes widespread suffering in tropical regions. Treatment involves drug therapy and rigorous hygiene to prevent skin infections.

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