Volume 77
Number 3

Turning Point

12 Hours on Unit 21

Outreach in Action

War of the Winds

A Sense of Place

Emory University

Association of Emory Alumni

Current News and Events

Emory Report



Sports Updates




















































. . A matchstick protrudes from her left ankle, with the tip of a pale, threadlike Guinea worm coiled around it. The stick will be turned once a day, coaxing the live worm slowly from her body.

A year earlier, the girl had sipped water contaminated with a tiny flea called cyclops, which carries the larvae of the Guinea worm. Worms can grow up to three feet long inside their human host before emerging through painful, burning blisters usually on the legs or feet. While the worm itself doesn’t kill its host, secondary infections from the disease can be fatal.

The ancient parasite, which has been found in three-thousand- year-old mummies, is so painful that grown men with the blisters put down their farming tools and cry. Children who can’t walk because of blisters on their legs and feet crawl along the ground.

No vaccine or treatments exist and victims can be reinfected repeatedly. Since the disease can cripple its victims, leaving them unable to work, attend school, care for children, or harvest crops, it further debilitates the already impoverished regions where it flourishes.

Hundreds of workers and volunteers with Global 2000, the international health and food security arm of the Carter Center, have been battling Guinea worm for more than a decade, with the hope that it will become the second disease after smallpox to be eradicated. Worldwide, cases of Guinea worm disease have dropped from 3.2 million in 1986 to 75,000 last year.

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