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Echinococcosis -An Emerging and Re-Emerging Cyclozoonosis of Global Importance

Mahendra Pal, Jyoti B.Dutta.


Zoonoses , caused by multiple etiological agents, are responsible for producing high morbidity as well as mortality in humans and in a wide variety of animals including birds. Among many zoonotic diseases, echinococcosis is recognized as a major helminthic cyclozoonosis of great public health and economic significance.There are 2 to 3 million human cases of echinococcosis in the world. Echinococcosis is reported from many countries of the world including Ethiopia and India.Disease is caused by several species of the genus Echinococcus, involving both definitive and intermediate host in life cycle. The ingestion of Echinococcus eggs in faeces of definitive host is the most common mode of transmission in humans. Environmental contamination of public parks and children gardens by faeces of dogs containing E.granulosus eggs may pose a health risk to people particularly the children who play in such places. It is considered an occupational zoonosis of dog keepers, pet handlers, and kennel attendants. MRI, CT scan, ELISA and PCR helps in diagnosing the disease. Strict meat inspection, destruction of stray dogs, proper disposal of affected offal, avoidance of feeding infected offal to dogs, treatment of dogs with praziquantel and health education to the public will certainly help to control echinococcosis which is regarded as emerging or re-emerging parasitic disease of global public health concern.

Key words: Dog, Echinococcosis, Helminthic cyclozoonosis, Offal, Public health,

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