d. Clinical Symptoms of Schistosomiasis.
(1) Early symptoms. Early symptoms are variable both in the time of their
appearance and their intensity, and they may appear at any part of the body.
Itching and rash may occur immediately after exposure.
Three to 10 weeks (commonly 5 to 6) later, a variety of general
symptoms may impair the soldier's ability to function effectively and may last for from 2
to 10 weeks.
(2) Remission and relapses. There may be remissions and relapses, but
early symptoms ultimately disappear in most cases if reinfection does not occur.
(3) Later symptoms. After a number of years, late symptoms of various kinds
appear in the circulatory, respiratory, digestive, or nervous systems separately or in
combination. Wasting away may be extreme.
Without treatment, schistosomes may persist and reproduce in the body for
up to 30 years.
e. Prevention. Under combat conditions in endemic areas, the avoidance of
cercariae-infested water is often difficult or impossible; however, certain precautions can
be taken by individuals to prevent or reduce chances of infection.
(1) Preventive measures
Clothing, especially if it has been impregnated with arthropod-
repelling compounds, serves as a fairly effective barrier.
Trousers should be tucked into the tops of boots and as much of the
skin covered as possible.
The application of standard issue insect repellent to exposed portions
of the skin that may come in contact with infested water will give added protection for a
Surveys by trained personnel should be made as early as possible to
locate infested bodies of water.
Appropriate warning signs should be posted.
Troops should be well indoctrinated as to the necessity for avoiding
contact with infested water.