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Onchocerca volvulus

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Summary

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Key Points

  • Onchocerca volvulus
    • Characteristics
      • Type of nematode (roundworm) parasite
    • Transmission
      • Bite of blackfly
        • Deposits larvae into human skin
        • Breeds near fast-flowing streams and rivers
    • Presentation: Onchocerciasis
      • Eye involvement
        • Larvae may be seen in eye on slit-lamp exam
        • Disease also known as “river blindness”
        • Uveitis, optic atrophy, and keratitis may be seen
      • Subcutaneous nodules
        • Also known as “onchocercomata”
        • Deep nodules in skin containing worms
      • Pruritis
      • Epilepsy may be seen with CNS involvement
    • Diagnosis
      • Skin snip biopsy is gold standard
    • Treatment
      • Ivermectin