Answer to Case 115
This was a case of Chagas Disease (American trypanosomiasis) caused by
an infection with
Trypanosoma cruzi and was acquired due to organ transplantation.
Diagnostic features observed included:
trypomastigote of T. cruzi with an undulating membrane.
- the presence
of a prominent, posteriorly-located oval kinetoplast (blue arrow) and a nucleus,
usually situated in the center of the body (red arrow).
- the size
of the organism, which was in the size range for T. cruzi (approximately 20 micrometers, range 12-30 micrometers).
It should be noted that
Trypanosoma rangeli can also infect humans in the Americas, overlapping
the geographic distribution of T. cruzi infections. However T.
rangeli has a smaller kinetoplast and is usually longer and more slender
(average length of 30 micrometers) than T. cruzi. There is no
pathology associated with T. rangeli infections in humans.
information regarding this interesting case, click
here for a MMWR article on the topic.
For more information on American trypanosomiasis, please click