The disease caused by nematode parasites of the genus Baylisascaris; migrating larvae of the raccoon parasite B. procyonis can cause a severe disease of the central nervous system in a variety of wild and domestic animal species and, rarely, in humans; human disease has been manifested as either a fatal eosinophilic meningoencephalitis or a diffuse unilateral subacute neuroretinitis.
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After consultation with CDC, empirical treatment with oral albendazole (25 mg/kg/day) and intravenous steroids for suspected baylisascariasis was initiated on April 29, while B.
In Santa Barbara County, a baylisascariasis case was reported in a toddler in 2002 (1,5); raccoon roundworm consistently infects >80% of raccoons (6,7); and latrines are abundant in residential areas (J.
gov/dpdx/HTML/PDF Files/MedLetter/ Baylisascariasis.
Although documented cases of human baylisascariasis remain relatively uncommon, environmental contamination by infected raccoons suggests that the risk of exposure and human infection is substantial.
Although this devastating disease is rare, lack of effective treatment and the widespread distribution of raccoons in close association with humans make baylisascariasis a disease that seriously affects public health.
Baylisascariasis is not a nationally notifiable disease in the United States, and little is known about how commonly it occurs or the range of clinical disease in humans.
The clinical spectrum of baylisascariasis is not fully understood.
Because of the patient's rapid neurologic decline, we initiated albendazole (20 mg/kg/d, given in doses every 12 h) and dexamethasone (4 mg every 6 h) on day 17 for empiric reatment of baylisascariasis or other helminth infection; we also initiated empiric fluconazole and doxycycline.
Thirty severe or fatal human cases of baylisascariasis have been reported (5-7; K.
One notable omission is the absence of discussion of emerging helminthic diseases, such as angiostrongyliasis, cysticercosis, alveolar echinococcosis, and baylisascariasis.
Other causes of a parasitic CNS disease, such as cysticercosis, toxocariasis, schistosomiasis, baylisascariasis, or paragonimiasis, can be distinguished by epidemiologic distribution, clinical signs and symptoms, radiologic appearance, and serologic testing.