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November 10, 1978

Schistosomiasis in Hmong People

Author Affiliations

University of Minnesota Minneapolis

JAMA. 1978;240(20):2152. doi:10.1001/jama.1978.03290200030005

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To the Editor.—  In the recent article by Elizabeth Barrett-Connor, MD, "Latent and Chronic Infections Imported From Southeast Asia" (239:1901, 1978), there is a reference to endemic Schistosoma japonicum on Khong Island in South Laos. The same disorder is also frequently encountered among the ethnic Hmong people in northern Laos (where I practiced general medicine during the period 1965 through 1967). Since there are already tens of thousands of Hmong people in the United States, with more soon to come, this disease should be considered in the differential diagnosis of cough and hemoptysis among Hmong people. Such a case was recently encountered by me in Minnesota.

Report of a Case.—  A 49-year-old married Hmong man had symptoms of depression and fatigue. He had failed to respond to previous medical treatment for a chronic cough. Cough and hemoptysis first developed nine years previously at the age of 40 years. Symptoms were