Malaria Thick Films Contaminated with Excretions of Flies Containing Flagellates (Herpetomonas)

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  • U. S. Army LaGarde General Hospital, New Orleans, Louisiana


  1. 1.Two malaria thick films (one from Alabama and the other from Mississippi) were found contaminated with flagellates (Herpetomonas Sp.) which apparently were deposited on the smears by insects.
  2. 2.House-flies (Musca domestica) reared free of parasites were experimentally infected with a culture of Herpetomonas muscae domesticae. The experimentally infected flies were permitted to feed on freshly made thick blood film, which they contaminated with Herpetomonas by depositing their excretion on the smears.
  3. 3.In malaria surveys (particularly in the field), it is important to safeguard the newly made blood smears from house-flies and other insects in order to avoid any possible confusion in diagnosis and in the destruction of the smears.

Author Notes

Captain, Sanitary Corps, A. U. S.