The National Institute of Communicable Diseases (NICD) has confirmed an outbreak of maggot (tumbu fly) infestation in people in the North West province and increased sporadic cases in Gauteng.
“Our laboratory has confirmed that the maggots are those of the tumbu fly (also known as the mango’ or ‘putsi’ fly). The increase in the number of cases is most likely related to the recent marked increase in seasonal rainfall, leading to the expansion of the fly’s normal range, namely the warmer northern and eastern parts of the country,” said the NICD.
According to the NICD, infection occurs when the adult female tumbu fly deposits eggs usually on urine or faeces-contaminated sand, soil or clothing. The maggots hatch and on contact with skin, penetrate and cause enlarging boil-like skin lesions, each with a small opening at the apex through which the larva breathes.
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