Helminths are a broad range of organisms that include intestinal parasitic worms, (roundworms (Ascaris lumbricoides), whipworms (Trichuris trichiura), or hookworms (Necator americanus and Ancylostoma duodenale).
Infected people excrete helminth eggs in their faeces, which then contaminate the soil in areas with inadequate sanitation. Other people can then be infected by ingesting eggs or larvae in contaminated food, or through penetration of the skin by infective larvae in the soil (hookworms).
Infestation can cause morbidity, and sometimes death, by compromising nutritional status, affecting cognitive processes, inducing tissue reactions, such as granuloma, and provoking intestinal obstruction or rectal prolapse. Control of helminthiasis is based on drug treatment, improved sanitation and health education.
TDR related research
TDR supports research on this disease. Our work is being conducted in the following areas:
WHO estimates investments needed for neglected tropical diseases
Engels appointed Director of WHO Neglected Tropical Diseases
A call for closer ties to communities
Pipeline grows for neglected diseases research and development (R&D)
TDR publications and articles
Research priorities for helminth infections
Changing Mindsets: Research Capacity strengthening in low and middle-income countries
A human rights-based approach to neglected tropical diseases