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Geneva, Switzerland, WHO, Department of Control of Neglected Tropical Diseases, 2006.  p. (WHO/CDS/NTD/2006.2)Neglected tropical diseases affect an estimated 1 billion people, primarily poor populations living in tropical and subtropical climates. They frequently cluster geographically and overlap; individuals are often afflicted with more than one parasite or infection. 100% of low-income countries are affected by at least five neglected tropical diseases simultaneously. More than 70% of countries and territories that report the presence of neglected tropical disease are low-income and lower middle-income economies. Infections are attributable to unsafe water, poor housing conditions and poor sanitation. Children are most vulnerable to infections of most neglected tropical diseases. Neglected tropical diseases kill, impair or permanently disable millions of people every year, often resulting in life-long physical pain, social stigmatization and abuse. Many can be prevented, eliminated or even eradicated with improved access to existing safe and costeffective tools. (excerpt)
The challenge of Trypanosoma brucei gambiense sleeping sickness diagnosis outside Africa. [Le défi que pose le diagnostic de la maladie du sommeil à Trypanosoma brucei gambiense en dehors de l'Afrique]
Lancet Infectious Diseases. 2003 Dec 1; 3(12):804-808.Sleeping sickness is a lethal African disease caused by parasites of the Trypanosoma brucei subspecies, which is transmitted by tsetse flies. Occasionally, patients are reported outside Africa. Diagnosis of such imported cases can be problematic when the infection is due to Trypanosoma brucei gambiense, the chronic form of sleeping sickness found in west and central Africa. The low number of trypanosomes in the blood and the non-specific, variable symptoms make the diagnosis difficult, particularly when the index of suspicion is low. When the trypanosomes have penetrated into the central nervous system, neuropathological signs become apparent but even at this stage, misdiagnosis is frequent. Rapid and correct diagnosis of sleeping sickness can avoid inappropriate or delayed treatment and even death of the patient. In this article, an overview on diagnosis of imported cases of T b gambiense sleeping sickness is given, and possible pitfalls in the diagnostic process are highlighted. Bioclinical parameters that should raise the suspicion of sleeping sickness in a patient who has been in west or central Africa are discussed. Techniques for diagnosis are reviewed. A clinician suspecting sleeping sickness should contact a national reference centre for tropical medicine in his or her country, or the WHO, Geneva, Switzerland, or the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Atlanta, GA, USA, for clinical consultation and provision of specific diagnostic tests. Appropriate drugs for sleeping sickness treatment are also provided by WHO and the CDC. (excerpt)
Bulletin of the World Health Organization. 2001; 79(11):1087.Government officials from 30 different African countries and about 300 international and national health experts met in Burkina Faso in October 2001 to launch a campaign to eliminate African trypanosomiasis, or sleeping sickness, and the tsetse fly that spreads the disease. Among the main supporters of this campaign are the Organization of African Unity, the Food and Agriculture Organization of UN and the International Atomic Energy Agency. The WHO, also a supporter of this campaign, is primarily concerned with reducing the human disease through better surveillance, case detection and treatment. Lastly, the campaign's 5-year plan of action is essentially based on a vigorous attack on the tsetse fly, mainly in Eastern Africa, by bolstering surveillance to map the occurrence and socioeconomic burden of the disease, and finding better ways of detecting and treating the disease.
In: Tropical disease research: progress 1991-92. Eleventh programme report of the UNDP / World Bank / WHO Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases (TDR). Geneva, Switzerland, World Health Organization [WHO], 1993. 1-14.1991 and 1992 were good years for the UNDP/World Bank/WHO Special Program for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases (TDR). Major advances were made in controlling leprosy, onchocerciasis, and Chagas disease, using TDR-supported products; significant advances were made in applied field research, operational research, and in the social sciences; arteether was brought into fully controlled clinical trials and a field trial of a malaria vaccine in African children was initiated; an initiative was launched to control malaria through the genetic engineering of the mosquito vector to interrupt transmission; TDR's research capability strengthening (RCS) component accelerated its move toward strengthening through research and increased its focus upon identifying individuals for training as a first step in the RCS process; and TDR increased the level of convergence among its internal components and between TDR and other health programs, and prepared to define its targets in terms of precise products and time frames.