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Diagnostic methods

Parasitological diagnosis
Dracunculiasis is diagnosed clinically by the effect of the gravid female worm (blister, then skin ulcer) or by an abscess induced by a dying worm). The adult worm may be seen protruding from the skin lesion.
Calcified worms may be seen by X-ray.

Molecular diagnosis
No tests developed

Antigen detection
Attempts to demonstrate D. medinensis antigens have so far been unsuccessful

Antibody detection
Immunodiagnostic tests have been explored using adult female worm and first-stage larval antigens. The most promising first results were obtained by detecting specific IgG4 antibodies.


Diagnostic strategies

Clinical findings are characteristic and no special diagnostic strategy is needed.

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