Common things to know about Filariasis and related things to it

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There is a diseases called Filariasis which makes your leg and feet swollen. This looks very dangerous and is liked by none. Today we will be telling you about Filariasis and things related to it.

What is Filaria or Filariasis?

Filariasis also called Elephantiasis is a helminthic disorder that makes your body part enlarged and swelling. In this, the parasite ‘Wuchereria bancrofti’ lives inside the lymph nodes/vessels and causes certain disorders.

filaria affected feet
filaria affected feet

Transmission of the disease:

These are thread-like roundworms and propagate through mosquitoes or black flies. Mosquitoes are merely responsible for the transmission of parasites that turn them into infected form.

Those diseases spread by these parasites are respectively called ‘Bancroftian filariasis’ and ‘Brugian filariasis’. Filariasis is commonly seen in warm countries as the countries restore atmospheric moisture and are the suitable sustenance for parasitic worms.

Appearance of the disease:

In India, it was first observed in 6th century A.D. The pathogen is transmitted from one human being to another by the means of mosquitoes. The parasites resides on the area of mosquito bite and they enters to the body through some punctured sites.

Causes of the disease Filariasis:

parasite of filaria
parasite of filaria

Mosquitoes like Anopheles, Culex and Aedes are some of the breeds that carry filarial parasites with them. In mosquitoes itself, the pathogen passes several life stages.

These are thread-like pathogens that reside in lymph vessels, mesentery and connective tissues. The parasites are sexual dimorphism in nature and are viviparous.

Their young ones are called ‘Microfilariae’. This is not a life-threatning disease; but can damage your lymph system and kidneys permanently.

Severeness of Filariasis:

Filariasis is the permanent swelling of body parts like legs, feet, face, scrotal, sacs or breasts. It is the thickening of subcutaneous tissues that makes your body ugly-looking and swollen.

This case is called Elephantiasis. In this, the feet and legs become fattened as elephants. In such cases, walking and movement becomes difficult and it also becomes a case of self-depletion.

Signs and Symptoms of Filariasis:-

  • Edema with thickening of skin
  • Urticarial papules
  • Increased eosinophils and enlarged lymph nodes
  • Filarial fever
  • Hardening of muscles with pain

Diagnosis of Filariasis:-

diagnosis of filaria
diagnosis of filaria
  • For this, blood tests from finger pricks can be done.
  • Diagnosis can be carried out any after a single symptom appears.
  • It can also be identified by ‘Giemsa stained’ using Gold standard.The diagnosis depends upon skin snips; and it can be carried out any time.

Treatment of Filariasis:-

  1. Commonly, it can be treated through drugs effect like Hetrazan, albendazole, diethyl carbamazine and MSE.
  2. Intake of prophylactic drugs is advised in filarial prone areas.
  3. Doxycycline is a drug that is effective to cure elephantiasis.
  4. The eight-week course of these drugs with Ivermectin gives an effective result.

Preventive measures for Filariasis:-

  1. The reconstruction of affected body part can heal a lot.
  2. It’s good to stay away from mosquitoes. Although mosquitoes itself are the carrier of vector host.
  3. Try to stay hygienic and consume fresh healthy food. Roundworms and parasites can’t survive in clean surroundings.
  4. Regular spray of insecticides should be done and avoidance of mosquito-prone areas decreases the risk of lymphatic filarial ailment in humans.
  5. Consume boiled water or filtered water; most of the hosts enter to the body through fluids itself.

Filariasis is not a life-threatening disease; but it has the capability to destroy your lymph and certain internal organs. The drugs provided; somehow contains analgesic property. Overall, the beginning of a minor disease can also be a symptom of a major ailment.

Hope you all like the post. Share this to all and do share your comments with us. Take care and live well!


  1. R.Rajan October 23, 2016
  2. Mahesh Prasad April 18, 2017

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