The parasite which causes this disease and which was called Try panosome was discovered in 1902.
This disease is spread by a fly called the Tsetse fly or Glossina Palpalis, and it is claimed that the parasite adheres to its mouth, so when it bites, the parasite is transferred to the wound.
The disease is confined principally to Africa and South America where whole native districts are said to have been depopulated.
Treatment. Koch and Manson recommend arsenic in the form of atoxyl as very effective.
The German Commission, sent out to East Africa under Koch to investigate Sleeping Sickness, found that the action of atoxyl was the most valuable of any drug in the treatment of this disease so far. This has proved valuable in all stages and has reduced the mortality in 1633 cases to eight per cent, which is a great improvement upon anything heretofore used, as the mortality formerly was very high.
The drug is an arsenical preparation and may be given in doses of three quarters of a grain or three grains daily. This drug is used with the best results by hypodermic injection under the skin, and larger doses must not be used, as the liability of poisoning as in arsenical preparation must be looked out for. This usually manifests itself either in the eye or by paralysis.
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