Volume 26, Issue 6
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



Serum and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) IgM were measured in 182 patients at various stages of Gambian sleeping sickness and correlated with antibody levels measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Each of these tests in serum gave a 30% false negative result, but when both were used this fell to 12%. Measurements of IgM in CSF were raised in 87% of patients with advanced disease and in none of the early cases. The IgM levels fell slowly to normal by 12 months after treatment. A high level at this time, or a rise after treatment, was helpful in diagnosing relapsed patients. Antibody levels in CSF were of no use in diagnosis or prognosis, and were raised in many controls.


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