Fatal Neglect Sleeping Sickness

Sleeping sickness

Sleeping sickness, or human African trypanosomiasis, is a parasitic infection which attacks the body’s central nervous system; without treatment the disease is fatal.

Considered a neglected disease, there are two forms of sleeping sickness, caused by two different parasites: Trypanosoma brucei gambiense, which is found in western and central Africa accounts for 98 per cent of cases; Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense, accounts for less than two percent of cases and is found in eastern and southern Africa. Both parasites are transmitted by the bite of the tsetse fly.

The disease causes severe neurological conditions, including poor coordination, confusion, agitation, aggressiveness or disinhibition. The more commonly-known name of the disease, sleeping sickness, derives from the symptom where patients experience an inability to sleep during the night but are often overcome by sleep during the day.

Republic of Congo

Prevalence of sleeping sickness inordinately high in Congo-Brazzaville

Project Update 29 Jun 2001
Sleeping sickness

Supply of sleeping sickness drugs confirmed

Press Release 3 May 2001
Republic of Congo

Sleeping sickness in Congo-Brazzaville possibly at epidemic proportions

Project Update 23 Apr 2001
Republic of Congo

Rehabilitation in Congo-Brazzaville opens way to sleeping-sickness programme

Project Update 18 Mar 2001
Sleeping sickness

A brief profile on sleeping sickness

Project Update 1 Jan 2001

Plan for a new MSF programme in northern Angola

Project Update 18 Dec 2000
Advanced HIV management in Homa Bay
Medical Resource

MSF Field Research

We produce important research based on our field experience. So far, we have published articles in over 100 peer-reviewed journals. These articles have often changed clinical practice and have been used for humanitarian advocacy. All of these articles can be found on our dedicated Field Research website.

Visit site