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Human African
b
Trypanosomiasis
Human African Trypanosomiasis (HAT)
is commonly known as sleeping sickness
HAT proceeds rapidly from lethargy
through coma to death
HAT is caused by a parastic protozoan
HAT is spread by the tsetse fly
or through contaminated blood
Life Cycle
There are two Types of HAT
• Trypanosoma brucei
rhodesiense
• Trypanosomoa brucei
gambiense
• Acute -- can cause
death in weeks or
months
• Chronic --lasts years
The two types
of HAT affect
different parts
of Africa
The major risk Factor I, once again…
exposure to these little bugs!
100%
Fatal if left untreated
cardiac failure or from the infection itself
Past epidemics have left their mark on
Africa.
Blood Smears can be used to
diagnose HAT
Cerebrospinal Fluid Tests can also be
used.
• Look for presence of trypanosomes
• High levels of CSP protein and WBCs
Complete Blood Count (CBC) are
another test used.
• Look for high levels of immunoglobulin
protein M
• Anemia
• High levels of White blood cells
Melarsoprol used to be the most
common treatment.
• Arsenic based
• Kills 5% of patients
“Like fire in the veins”
Eflornithine had less side effects but
was far too costly and inconvenient
• 1 hour infusions, every 6 hours for 2 weeks
• $655
Nifurtimox-Eflornithine Combination
Therapy (NECT) is the first new
treatment in 25 years
• On WHO’s Essential Drugs List (2009)
• $330
NECT has considerably less side
effects.
• 86% Experienced Side effect
• 37.9% Mild
• 54.7% Moderate
Work to find new treatments is being
done right here in North Carolina
“it will be the first new, orally active treatment
for sleeping sickness in the past 30 years”
Currently, the PATTEC is attempting to
eradicate HAT.
Resources
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