Ailment Borne by Freshwater Snails on Increase in China

Associated Press

Snail fever, a sometimes fatal ailment transmitted by a parasite living on freshwater snails, has made a comeback in southern China, it was reported Friday.

The newspaper China Daily said that the disease, also called schistosomiasis, is endemic in nine provinces.

The resurgence of the disease is due to loosened controls and the expansion of irrigation canals and fishing ponds where the snails live, the report said.

A freshwater snail is the host for the blood fluke parasite that can enter the bloodstream and lead to anemia, dysentery, cirrhosis of the liver and sometimes death.

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