Volume 48/Number 3/Abstract 14
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Acta Parasitologica, Vol.48, No. 3, 2003, 237
Swiderski Zdzislaw - Worms and Human Disease (2nd edition) by Ralph Muller, CABI Publishing 2002, Paperback, ISBN 0 85199 516 0, pp. 300

W. Stefanski Institute of Parasitology Polish Academy of Sciences, Twarda 51/55, 00-818 Warszawa, Poland

"Worms and Human Disease" represents a welcome second edition of the successful, advanced student textbook previously published in 1975 as "Worms and Disease: A Manual of Medical Helminthology". This text has been thoroughly updated and extensively revised. Its present contents follow the rapid advances in our understanding of helminthic infections over the past twenty years, in particular recent developments in molecular biology and immunology of parasitic diseases. It also includes contributions and chapter on immunology of helminths by an expert in this field, Prof. Derek Wakelin, University of Nottingham, UK. The main part of this book has a traditional arrangement of chapters devoted to all major groups of helminths, namely trematodes, cestodes, acanthocephalans, nematomorphans and both intestinal and tissue nematodes. In the additional chapter six, other non-helminth groups such as pentastomids, leeches and fly larvae (myiasis), also received brief attention. Also very useful are chapters eight on epidemiological aspects of helminth infection, chapter nine on helminthological techniques, and the list of general references and further reading. The three following appendices, included at the end of this book, represent an excellent, condensed source of supplementary information: (1) summary of some landmarks in medical helminthology; (2) glossary of helminthological terms; and (3) location of helminths in the human body. This authoritative textbook emphasizes the vast range of helminths that can infect humans and underscores the obvious fact that the majority of the world's population is still currently at risk of exposure to one or several species of these parasites. The book covers all human helminthic infections with particular emphasis on diagnostics, treatment, clinical manifestations of diseases, pathogenesis, epidemiology and control. The author gives practical guidelines for estimating the clinical and epidemiological importance of helminthiases, particularly vital in the regions where the majority of populations are infected with many helminths, but only a few are sick and show all characteristic symptoms of disease. The excellent text is well supplemented with good line drawings, and black and white photographs, whereas eight plates of colour photographs are presented at the very beginning of this book. In my opinion, however, the colour photographs of the eggs of different helminth species, which represent important diagnostic criteria for detection of most of helminthic diseases, would be a very useful supplement for this valuable text. In conclusion, I highly recommend this new, updated second edition of the successful textbook "Worms and Disease: A Manual of Medical Helminthology" published under a new title "Worms and Human Disease". I am sure it will become a standard textbook for pre- and postgraduate students. It may prove valuable, however, not only to students taking courses in medical and general helminthology, but also to their teachers. This is an essential book for medical and in particular parasitological libraries and will be a welcome addition to the shelf of anyone concerned with human parasitic diseases and medical parasitology in general. The relatively low price of this paperback edition, L 35.00 (USD 60.00), will ensure it is affordable to readers worldwide.

Page compiled by M. Bultowicz Last modification: 04-11-2003