AskDefine | Define yaws

The Collaborative Dictionary

Yaws \Yaws\, n. [African yaw a raspberry.] (Med.) A disease, occurring in the Antilles and in Africa, characterized by yellowish or reddish tumors, of a contagious character, which, in shape and appearance, often resemble currants, strawberries, or raspberries. There are several varieties of this disease, variously known as framboesia, pian, verrugas, and crab-yaws. [1913 Webster]

Word Net

yaws n : an infectious tropical disease resembling syphilis in its early stages; marked by red skin eruptions and ulcerating lesions [syn: frambesia, framboesia]

Moby Thesaurus

African lethargy, Asiatic cholera, Chagres fever, German measles, Haverhill fever, acute articular rheumatism, ague, alkali disease, amebiasis, amebic dysentery, anthrax, bacillary dysentery, bastard measles, black death, black fever, blackwater fever, breakbone fever, brucellosis, bubonic plague, cachectic fever, cerebral rheumatism, chicken pox, cholera, cowpox, dandy fever, deer fly fever, dengue, dengue fever, diphtheria, dumdum fever, dysentery, elephantiasis, encephalitis lethargica, enteric fever, erysipelas, famine fever, five-day fever, flu, frambesia, glandular fever, grippe, hansenosis, hepatitis, herpes, herpes simplex, herpes zoster, histoplasmosis, hookworm, hydrophobia, infantile paralysis, infectious mononucleosis, inflammatory rheumatism, influenza, jail fever, jungle rot, kala azar, kissing disease, lepra, leprosy, leptospirosis, loa loa, loaiasis, lockjaw, madness, malaria, malarial fever, marsh fever, measles, meningitis, milzbrand, mumps, ornithosis, osteomyelitis, paratyphoid fever, parotitis, parrot fever, pertussis, pneumonia, polio, poliomyelitis, polyarthritis rheumatism, ponos, psittacosis, rabbit fever, rabies, rat-bite fever, relapsing fever, rheumatic fever, rickettsialpox, ringworm, rubella, rubeola, scarlatina, scarlet fever, schistosomiasis, septic sore throat, shingles, sleeping sickness, sleepy sickness, smallpox, snail fever, splenic fever, spotted fever, strep throat, swamp fever, tetanus, thrush, tinea, trench fever, trench mouth, tuberculosis, tularemia, typhoid, typhoid fever, typhus, typhus fever, undulant fever, vaccinia, varicella, variola, venereal disease, viral dysentery, whooping cough, yellow fever, yellow jack, zona, zoster

English

Noun

yaws
  1. A contagious tropical disease, caused by the spirochete Treponema pertenue, characterized by yellowish or reddish tumors, which often resemble currants, strawberries, or raspberries.
  2. Plural of yaw

Verb

yaws
  1. third person singular of yaw
Yaws (also Pétasse tropica, thymosis, polypapilloma tropicum or pian) is a tropical infection of the skin, bones and joints caused by the spirochete bacterium Treponema pertenue. Other treponematosis diseases are bejel (Treponema endemicum), pinta (Treponema carateum), syphilis (Treponema pallidum), and Lyme Disease (Borrelia burgdorferi).

Epidemiology

The disease is transmitted by skin contact with infected individuals or eye gnats, the spirochete entering through an existing cut or similar damage. Within ninety days (but usually less than a month) of infection a painless but distinctive 'mother yaw' ulcer appears. These tracts heal with keloid formation which can cause deformities, disabilities and limb contractures. The bone lesions caused are periostitis, osteitis, and osteomyelitis, damage to the tibia can lead to a condition known as sabre shins. In a very few cases a condition known as goundou is caused where growths on the nasal maxillae can result in extensive and severe damage to the nose and palate.
The largest group afflicted by yaws are children aged 6 to 10 years in tropical areas of the Americas, Africa, Asia or Oceania. There were World Health Organization funded campaigns against yaws from 1954 to 1963 which greatly reduced the incidence of the disease, although more recently numbers have risen again.
The disease is identified from blood tests or by a lesion sample through a darkfield examination under a microscope. Treatment is by a single dose of penicillin, erythromycin or tetracycline, recurrence or relapse is uncommon.
Examination of ancient remains has led to the suggestion that yaws has affected hominids for the last 1.5 million years. The current name is believed to be of Carib origin, "yaya" meaning sore; frambesia is a Modern Latin word inspired by the French word framboise ("raspberry").

Occurrence

Yaws was nearly eradicated by a worldwide treatment program in the 1950s, which reduced the number of sufferers of yaws from an estimated 50 million to nearly zero. However, the World Health Organization reported in January 2007 that yaws is on the rise again, with roughly a half a million sufferers, mostly in poor, rural areas.

References

  • McNeill, Katie H. "Plagues and People." Bantam Doubleday Dell Publishing Group, Inc., New York, NY, 1976, ISBN 0-385-12122-9.
yaws in German: Frambösie
yaws in French: Pian (médecine)
yaws in Italian: Framboesia
yaws in Dutch: Framboesia
yaws in Japanese: フランベジア
yaws in Polish: Malinica
yaws in Portuguese: Bouba
yaws in Swedish: Framboesi
yaws in Turkish: Frambezi
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