Trichinosis is one of the most ubiquitous diseases of infectious origin. It has been estimated that 1 in every 6 persons in the United States, about 25,000,000, harbor the causative agent, Trichinella spiralis.1 Each year 350,000 more acquire the infection and almost 16,000 may ingest enough parasites to produce detectable signs and symptoms. It is further estimated that about 5% of all those with symptomatic infection die, although many of these cases are undiagnosed, unrecognized, or unreported.* The average annual number of reported cases is about 336.
In a nation which becomes palpably distressed by public discussion of diseases of much lower incidence, these figures should arouse a tremendous demand for correction of a shocking situation. Ironically, the means for control and prevention are readily available. Supervision of distribution of pork and pork products should, if properly conducted, go far in eliminating trichinosis. Unfortunately, the high incidence of this
GREENSTEIN NM, STEINBERG D. The Prompt and Effective Response of Trichinosis to Corticotropin. AMA Am J Dis Child. 1958;95(3):261-269. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1958.02060050263006