Parasitic infection is one of the major health problem in developing countries in tropical areas. However, because of increasing population and the international air travel, the parasites prevalent in tropics have now being frequently reported from industrialized countries as well.
In this context, it gives me a great pleasure to learn that the scientists working in the Faculty of Medicine of this Kobe University School of Medicine have prepared an Atlas of Medical Parasitology with an aim to provide a guide to the medical students and to newly qualified medical practitioners in diagnosing the parasitic diseases.
Inspite of tremendous advancement made in the field of infectious diseases during past, many problems still remain. Of the various types of infectious diseases, parasitic infections yet constitute one of the major public health problem particularly in developing countries in tropical and sub-tropical areas. Many people in these areas are suffering from one or more than one parasitic infections and their sequelae. This has been attributed to low socio-economic standards, poor sanitary facilities, Iow education level and limited diagnostic facilities. Rapid and unplanned urbanization has also been found to be associated with the increase of parasitoses. In addition, increasing international travel and business have also contributed to the spread of parasitic diseases in countries once considered to have no or very low rate of parasitic infections. Therefore, the importance of parasitic diseases once said to be confined in developing countries is now emerging in developed countries as well.
This atlas has been prepared with an aim to provide a guide to the students of medical sciences and to newly qualified medical practitioners in diagnosing the parasitic diseases. In this atlas, a total of 167 photographs of more than 50 parasites of medical importance and some of the related clinical manifestations have been included. The parasites have been grouped as intestinal and urogenital, and blood and tissue parasites. Parasites like Echinococcus, Toxocara, Anisakis, Gnathostoma, and Spirometra are kept in the group of blood and tissue parasite as they are found in tissues in human. In addition, some of the ectoparasites have also been included. Brief recapitulatory introduction of parasite and respective caption for each of the photograph used have been given on the left. Scanning electron microscopic photographs of some of the parasites have also been included so as to provide an impression about the ultrafine surface structure of the parasites.