Diagnostic Video

Dr. Vijayalakshmi Balakrishnan

Senior Consultant, Infectious Diseases, Kauvery Hospital, Chennai, India

Dr Vijayalakshmi

Diagnosis: Dirofilaria

The genus Dirofilaria includes vector-borne filarial nematodes, which are usually associated with carnivore hosts. Some Dirofilaria spp. are zoonotic; the most commonly seen species in human patients are D. repens, D. tenuis, and D. immitis (the dog heartworm).

D. repens usually manifests as either a wandering worm in the subcutaneous tissue or a granulomatous nodule. Lesions can occur in a variety of locations, the most typical being in exposed sites (e.g. scalp, arms, legs, eyelids, chest).

D. tenuis follows a similar presentation, but may also be found around the eye or on the conjunctiva and involve the facial region (e.g. ocular and periocular sites, oral mucosa, cheek).