Guinea Worm

Guinea Worm

Guinea worm is a disease caused by a parasite found in unsafe drinking water that enters a person’s body1.


A significant amount of progress has been made to prevent Guinea worm. In 1986, an estimated 3.5 million people in Africa and Asia had Guinea worm. Today, the incidence of Guinea worm has decreased by over 99%. Through the continued work on Guinea worm prevention and education, led by The Carter Center, it is possible that Guinea worm disease will be the second human disease in history to be completely eradicated1.


In 2012, only four countries reported local Guinea worm disease:  Chad, Ethiopia, Mali, and South Sudan.  As of December 2012, the World Health Organization had certified 192 countries and territories around the world as being free of Guinea worm disease2.


When the Guinea worm parasite enters a person’s body it can cause intense pain and discomfort. Guinea worm can incapacitate people and make them unable to work or go to school.


There is no vaccination or treatment for Guinea worm, yet much work has been done to prevent Guinea worm through education and safe drinking water. The Carter Center has been the leading organization in the fight against Guinea worm. They have contributed greatly to the decrease in cases of Guinea worm primarily through water filtration with the help of the LifeStraw® for Guinea Worm filters.

Read more at LifeStraw®

1The Carter Center. Guinea worm facts.

2CDC. Guinea worm disease FAQs.

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