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The Zoonotic Dog Roundworm Toxocara canis, a Worldwide Burden of Public Health

Part of the Parasitology Research Monographs book series (Parasitology Res. Monogr.,volume 13)

Abstract

The zoonotic dog roundworm Toxocara canis infects not only a broad range of canids as definitive hosts, but also affects humans as paratenic hosts after accidental infection. In humans, clinical apparent toxocarosis (or toxocariasis) is classified into four different syndromes: visceral larva migrans (VLM), ocular larva migrans (OLM), neurotoxocarosis (NT) and covert toxocarosis. Symptoms range from abdominal pain to irreversible blindness or meningitis and cognitive disorders. Nevertheless, toxocarosis is a neglected zoonotic disease, which is often undiagnosed. Until today, the parasite remains enigmatic in many aspects. This chapter aims to summarise key characteristics of the biology of T. canis, risk factors that lead to human infection, clinical presentation and relevance of human toxocarosis and possibilities of control and prevention measures. Further research efforts as well as raising public awareness for this zoonotic dog parasite are essential to improve the control of this challenging zoonotic infection.

Keywords

  • Toxocarosis
  • Toxocariasis
  • VLM
  • OLM
  • Neurotoxocarosis
  • Parasitic zoonosis

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Fig. 2.1
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Waindok, P., Raulf, MK., Springer, A., Strube, C. (2021). The Zoonotic Dog Roundworm Toxocara canis, a Worldwide Burden of Public Health. In: Strube, C., Mehlhorn, H. (eds) Dog Parasites Endangering Human Health. Parasitology Research Monographs, vol 13. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-53230-7_2

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