A "silent infection" transmitted from Africa infects a 17-year-old man with severe swelling in his penis A "silent infection" transmitted from Africa infects a 17-year-old man with severe swelling in his penis

A "silent infection" transmitted from Africa infects a 17-year-old man with severe swelling in his penis

A "silent infection" transmitted from Africa infects a 17-year-old man with severe swelling in his penis

A team of health experts revealed the case of a 72-year-old man, who lived for 17 years with severe swelling in his penis, as well as swelling of the scrotum and left leg.

The patient, whose name was not mentioned, was found to be suffering from an aggressive infestation of microscopic live worms called Wuchereria bancrofti, causing chronic inflammation around his thigh.

The case report, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, said the man lived in Switzerland after moving from Zimbabwe 20 years ago, where the infection is more common.

The infection is caused by mosquito bites, which transmit the larvae into the bloodstream. Once they hatch, they move to the lymphatic system (fluid drainage network), which contributes to their transport to other areas of the body, including the scrotum, then they mature, mate and reproduce.

Doctors at the University Hospital of Basel in Switzerland treated the patient using anti-parasitic drugs, and within two months of taking the drugs, his symptoms completely disappeared.

Parasitic worm infections are relatively common in tropical and subtropical regions, including parts of Africa, Asia and South America.

Usually, the worms do not cause any symptoms, but damage to the lymphatic system leads (in some cases) to fluid accumulation in the legs, leading to lymphedema. In cases of significant swelling of the extremities, patients are diagnosed with elephantiasis.

In men, parasitic worms can lead to swelling in the genital area.

It is noteworthy that there are approximately 100 million active infections worldwide, and most of those infected live in sub-Saharan Africa.

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