n CME : Your SA Journal of CPD - Parasitic diseases in the returning traveller : main article

Volume 27, Issue 6
  • ISSN : 0256-2170



Travellers returning with parasitic diseases from endemic areas do not necessarily present with signs or symptoms specifically suggestive of a parasitosis - in most cases these are nonspecific (e.g. malaria presenting as a flu-like illness). Many features are shared with non-parasitic infectious diseases (e.g. signs and symptoms of amoebic liver 'abscess' may be identical to those of bacterial liver abscess(es)), and non-infectious diseases (e.g. in someone just returning from the tropics, classic signs of thyrotoxicosis may be misinterpreted as a febrile infectious disease because of the travel history). Moreover, a considerable percentage of travellers who acquired a parasitosis abroad may remain asymptomatic for a long time, sometimes for years. It is therefore important not to focus exclusively on parasitic conditions, but also to consider non-parasitic entities as a differential diagnosis in the returning traveller.

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