Schistosomiasis (bilharzia) - 2014 Lancet review

Human schistosomiasis—or bilharzia—is a parasitic disease caused by trematode flukes of the genus Schistosoma.

230 million people worldwide are infected with Schistosoma spp.

Schistosomiasis: Ending the Anguish of a Silent Disease - The Carter Center video.

Adult schistosome worms colonise human blood vessels for years, successfully evading the immune system while excreting hundreds to thousands of eggs daily. The eggs must either leave the body in excreta or become trapped in nearby tissues. Trapped eggs induce an immune-mediated granulomatous response that causes:

Systemic effects

- anemia
- growth stunting
- impaired cognition
- decreased physical fitness

Organ-specific effects

- severe hepatosplenism
- periportal fibrosis with portal hypertension
- urogenital inflammation and scarring.

Prevention in endemic regions consist of treatment once every 1 or 2 years with the isoquinolinone drug, praziquantel, to suppress morbidity.


Human schistosomiasis : The Lancet
Living with Schistosomiasis - YouTube
Schistosomiasis (1990) Wellcome Library:

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