Quiz 43: Antiprotozoal and Anthelmintic Drugs


Protozoa is a commonly found single-celled micro-organisms that is known to produce infection in the circulatory, gastrointestinal (GI) and urogenital systems. The common infectious disease transmitted through protozoa is: malaria, dysentery and trichomoniasis. The liver and circulatory system are known to be affected in the protozoan infection malaria. It is transmitted by a common protozoan known as Plasmodium. These are four species and each of them is known to infect human beings. The finding is that the symptoms produced by infections like dysentery and trichomoniasis causes more problem and are not dangerous. The protozoa can enter into the gastro-intestinal system of human being through contaminated food or water.

The protozoa that infect the urinary tract of men as well as women is known as the Trichomonas vaginalis. The infection caused is termed as trichomoniasis and is considered to be a sexually transmitted disease (STD). This is because the infection is transmitted to females through sexual intercourse. That means if the male infected with this organism does intercourse with her female partner then there is a probability that the female gets vaginal trichomonal infection. The drug Metronidazole used in the treatment therapy is known to cause a disulfiram reaction when administered along with alcohol. Therefore it is necessary to warn the patient about the adverse effects of consuming alcohol along with metronidazole therapy. Therefore the women diagnosed with this disease and being given metronidazole should be warned of potential drug interaction. She should also be warned of the probability of transmission of disease from her to her partner.

Pinworm is a parasite that causes enterobiasis. The eggs hatch in the small intestine (duodenum). Then from the eggs, the larvae rapidly grow and range 140mm size. From the small intestine, it moves towards colon region and starts to settle down in different intestinal regions and start laying eggs after 5 weeks of ingestion. These pinworms generally emerge from the anal region in order to gain oxygen supply for egg maturation and for further infection. Voriconazole and flucytosine are used against fungal infection. Voriconazole is used against candidiasis. Flucytosine is also used against candida species and Cryptococcus species. These drugs inhibit fungal DNA and slow the progression of the organisms. Hence, option (a) and (d) are not the correct answers. Ritonavir is an anti-viral drug. Ritonavir usually blocks the viral proteases which is responsible for the new viral assembly. So, this drug prevents the release of new virus in to the blood stream and also prevent them from infecting lymphocytes. Hence, option (c) is not the correct answer. Quinine is generally used as antacids, antibiotics, neuromuscular blockers and as oral anticoagulants. It is widely used against treating malarial infection. Hence, option (e) is not the correct answer. Mostly, for treating pinworm infections anthelmintic drugs were used. Generally, they directly act upon parasites. These drugs cause paralysis of muscles in the worms and decrease their metabolic activity and their motility. Some of the important drugs are, Mebendazole, also called Vermox, it is an orally administered anthelmintic drugs used against parasitic worms like roundworms, pinworms, and hookworms. Praziquantel also known as Biltricide, an orally given tablet used against tapeworm and liver flukes. Pyrantel pamoate is also known as Pin-X, an orange coloured chewable tablet used against pinworms and roundworms. Hence, option img is the correct answer.

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