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June 13, 2012     Feather River Bulletin
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June 13, 2012

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Bulletin, Record, Progressive, Reporter Wednesday, June 13, 2012 9B : Pervasive parasite-borne disease has consequences C-FORCE HEALTH AND FITNESS CHUCK NORRIS Q: Mr. Norris, your recent "C-Force" articles on the dis- eases caused by deer ticks (Lyme disease) and tape- worms (neurocysticercosis) were very enlightening. However, I just read a new. health alert from England about another rapidly grow- ing disease in North Ameri- ca: Chagas' disease• Heard of it? --Sean R. Wisconsin A: Yes. Chagas' disease is another parasite-based dis- ease, and it is so pervasive here and in South America that Baylor College of Medi- cine's Peter J. Hotez and his colleagues are calling it "the new AIDS of the Americas•" Chagas' disease got its name from the Brazilian physician Charles Chagas, who first recognized th¢ dis- ease in 1909 though it had been around for more than 9,000 years (even discovered in mummies from the an- cient Chinchorro culture of South America)• WebMD has just posted an heart failure, severely al- Indiana." repellant on you, on your unlike AIDS, Chagas' cannot excellentarticle on Chagas' tered heart rhythm, and So how is it transmitted?loved ones and in your yard. be transmitted via sexual in- disease, explaining that it is heart attack•" About 25 per- In many ways, but the most Examine your and your chil- tercourse. caused by a parasite Called cent of infected people devel- common is through the bites dren's clothes when re-en- According to WebMD, on- Trypanosoma cruzi. Once op an enlarged heart or in- of various bloodsucking in- tering the house after being ly two drugs are used to human cells are infected by testines -- which can burst sects called triatomes bet- outside. Regularly change treat Chagas' disease ni- the parasite and it multi- suddenly, causing immedi- ter known as kissing bugs, your bed sheets, and look furtimox and benznidazole plies within them, those ate death• cone-nosed bugs, assassinunder and around mattress- -- neither of which is ap- cells burst and deploy the An estimated 10 million to bugs and reduviid bugs. es. And regularly examine proved by the Food and parasites into the blood- 20 million people worldwide Eleven of these bug species and bathe your pets: (They Drug Administration. And stream, have Chagas' disease, with live in the southern U.S. and sleep with you at an added in the U.S., they can be •b- The acute phase of Cha- most being in Mexico, Cen- are found as far west as risk!) Lastly, sanitize bug tained only through the Cen- gas' (in the initial weeks and tral America and South Northern California and as bites; don't scratch them. ters for Disease Control and months of infection) is often America. About 30,000 peo- far east as Pennsylvania.WebMD explains other Prevention. unnoticed because symp- ple in North America have Many are nocturnal, so they ways that the Chagas' para- Unfortunately and tragi- toms can be minor and simi- been infected with the para- do their dirty work at night, site can be spread: cally, little research has lar to those of the flu fa- site, with troubled areas Brace yourself for this --By getting a blood trans- been done to find new treat- tigue, body aches, fever, most prevalent in the south- next bit of information, fusion or organ transplant ments for Chagas', though headaches, appetite loss, ern U.S., particularly in The bugs are attracted tofrom an infected person.Kaiser Health News just re- rashes, vomiting and diar- Texas and along the Gulflips (hence the nickname --By eating undercooked ported that an international rhea. (There is one unique Coast• Most U.S. cases have "kissing bugs") yet are in- foods contaminated with in- team of 30 scientists con- symptom, which I'll discuss been found in immigrants, discriminate about where fected bugs or their drop- cluded a decade of research momentarily.) But in some The interesting aspect they bite to get blood. How- pings• and "has decoded the cases, it can take years for about the increase in North ever, it's not the bite that --By eating undercooked genome of one of the main symptoms to madifest them- America is that the parasite transmits Chagas' parasites, game infected with Chagas vectors of Chagas disease, selves• doesn't even originate here. It's the bugs' waste that is parasites, paving the way for more tar- However, symptoms in the But with the increases in infected and dropped around --From mother to child geted vector control and new chronic phase manifest global transport of people the open wound and then of- during pregnancy or during ways to prevent disease themselves in about a third and food, it is spreading ten smeared into it or anoth- breastfeeding, transmission." of those infected, and they worldwide• Cases have been er orifice on our bodies In laboratory accidents. If you or your loved ones can have devastating effects discovered as far as Europe when we scratch the infect- "In South America, people are experiencing any symp- to the heart, intestines and and Japan• ed area and spread the have been infected with Cha- toms mentioned above, im- nervous system. Digestive Dr. Jennifer House, fromwaste. One unique sign ofgas parasites through conta- mediately contact your problems, including an en- the Indiana State Depart- Chagas' disease is called Ro- minated cane j uice, acai physician or health practi- larged esophagus and diffi- ment of Health, recently re- mana's sign, which is thejuice, guava juice, and palm tioner. culty swallowing, can occur, ported, "It's a parasite that swelling of one's eyelids af- wine." too. is transmitted in Central ter one rubs his eyes with Obviously, ensuring prop- WebMD continues: "The and South America, so weinfected bug waste, er testing and sanitization in Write to Chuck Norris most common complication don't actually have the para- As noted in my articles on medical procedures and the (info@creators.corn) with of chronic Chagas' disease is site here in the United bedbugs and tick bites, the production and preparation questions about health and a heart condition called States; now, individuals that best method of prevention is of foods and beverages, etc., fitness. chronic Chagas cardiomy- ... originated from those to stay out of heavily invest- is paramount to avoiding opathy. These complications high-risk countries could ed areas of insects or brush. Chagas' parasites. It should Copyright 2012 Chuck Norris include enlarged heart, actually come back to Use ample amounts of insect be noted, however, that Distributed by DEET, from page 8B Note that use of lemon euca- lyptus is not advised on chil- dren under 3. It is important to remember in this context the fact that a chemical is natural, not synthetic, does not necessarily mean it is safe. Any possible short- or long- term risks ofDEET orany bug repellent have to be lem in your own yard, getwhen you venture outside at cause Lyme disease. Not on- outing. weighed against the known, rid of standing water, which buggy times. Wear socks, ly do you need to be fully serious effects of diseases is where mosquitoes breed, long pants and long-sleeved covered when outdoors, theAura Whittaker has a Bache- carried by insects and ticks, Check your local mosquitoshirts made of heavy fabric clothing you wear should be lor of Science degree in kine- including West Nile virus, forecast and stay indoors or that mosquitoes can't bite light in color and you should siology and more than 20 Lyme disease, dengue fever in a screened porch when through. Then you only need tuck your pants into your years experience in nutrition- and malaria. If you live in or levels are expected to berepellent (if you choose to socks• Check periodically al consulting and personal are traveling to an area high. When traveling in ar- wear it) on your face andfor ticks on your clothes training. Send comments to where these diseases are eas where you may be ex- hands, and clothes if youwhile you're out and then, prevalent, make sure you posed to disease-carryingchoose, check your body when you or Lassen County Times, 100 have a plan for protection mosquitoes indoors, sleepProper clothing is really a get home. Remove ticks Grand Ave., Susanville, CA and follow it. under mosquito netting, must when it comes to promptly. Wash and dry the96130. To avoid a mosquito prob- Keep yourself well covered avoiding ticks, which canclothes you wore on your AUTO REPAIR AUTO GLASS BUSINESS EQUIPMENT COMPUTER SERVICE MINE BANK p PUTERS. FAX .... PRinTERS *CASH REGISTERS BUSINESS EQUIPMENT Sales • Service • Supplies 36 years experience Windshield Repair & Replacement 2140 E. Main St. Quincy ! Auto Techtronics Professional Car & Truck Repair 213 Danny Ct. E. Quincy i;~ii~l i Two Local Technicians ,~ :. 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