Tales of schistosomiasis including a close encounter with Schistosoma haematobium and a mistaken diagnosis of schistosomiasis from a liver biopsy.
This article reports the rapid diagnosis by microscopy of infection with Schistoma haematobium in a recently returned Peace Corps volunteer presenting to a UK sexual clinic with lumpy semen after swimming in Lake Malawi. The article goes on to describe a morphological misdiagnosis of schistosomiasis by a pathologist who examined a biopsy specimen taken in a non-endemic area and mistook ascaris eggs for schistosome ova. The article is accompanied by snippets of medical history including the observation of live larvae by Theodor Bilharz in the 1850s, the heroic self-experimentation of Claude Barlow and ingenious Japanese experiments to work out the mode of transmission of schistosomiasis in cattle.
Air pollution – a problem for travellers?
Mike Townend MB, ChB (Hons), Dip Trav Med, FFTM RCPS(Glasg), Hon Fellow BGTHA, Hon Clinical Senior Lecturer, University of Glasgow
Outdoor air pollution is a major environmental health problem affecting everyone in low, middle and high income countries. Some of the most important air pollutants are particulate matter, carbon monoxide, ozone, nitrogen dioxide, sulfur dioxide, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and volatile organic compounds. This paper examines the origins of these pollutants and their effects on human health, dealing in particular with particulate matter of 2.5 microns in size (PM2.5). The geographical distribution of air pollution and its relevance to the health of travellers are discussed.