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June 28, 1952

HOOKWORM DISEASE IN THE PARAGUAYAN CHACO

Author Affiliations

452 Haberfelde Bldg. Bakersfield, Calif.

JAMA. 1952;149(9):887. doi:10.1001/jama.1952.02930260089020

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Abstract

To the Editor:—  During my medical work in the Paraguayan Gran Chaco from 1946 to 1948, human hookworm infection was the major debilitating disease. While hookworm was found in the native Paraguayan Indians in 1926, their superstitions and nescient habits prevented me from investigating this group. Considering their habitude, one would surmise that all should be infected. Surprisingly, however, on examination of a few of these Indians, a small percentage were found free of this infection.My work was concerned with Swiss-Dutch emigrees who, in the 1920's and 1930's, settled in the Chaco about 150 miles west of Puerto Casada, on the Paraguay River. The area involved is about 30 miles north of the Tropic of Capricorn and 150 miles west of the Paraguay River. This region receives an average annual rainfall of 28 inches. The temperature varies from 30 F in the winter to 110 F in the summer.

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