An infection from a parasite that happens in parts of Africa that don't have safe water.


Dracunculiasis occurs when people drink water that has water fleas that carry guinea worm eggs. Eating raw or undercooked water animals that are infected, such as fish and frogs, also might cause the disease. The disease almost has been wiped out.


Symptoms start about a year after infection. The symptoms happen days or hours before one or more worms come out of the skin. This may cause swelling and burning pain at the site and fever. Most worms come out of the lower legs.


There's no treatment. Once a worm begins to come out, it can be pulled out little by little each day. Getting the worm out all the way most often takes weeks.

Last Updated Mar 15, 2024

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