Diarrheal Diseases: New Challenges and Emerging Opportunities

  • Richard L. Guerrant


In keeping with the central theme, “Global Medicine: Current Status and Directions for the Twenty-First Century,” a discussion of diarrheal diseases is particularly relevant, as diarrheal diseases constitute a leading global cause of morbidity and mortality and provide a useful “barometer” of health. Indeed, health is one of the most universal human values, transcending all cultural, political and geographic boundaries; everyone would rather be healthy than sick. In only this century has some measure of health, like education, become an attainable goal for most, with existing societal resources. Despite this potential, growing disparity threatens global health and perhaps civilization itself. Diarrheal diseases provide a useful barometer of health or neglect of a people, as well as a poignant example of the tremendous potential that public health and recent scientific advances have for alleviating human suffering. We must dare to consider the possibility of a world with a certain minimum level of health for all, with food and energy potentially freely available by molecular biologic or other methods, such as engineered E. coli or cyanobacteria to produce carbohydrates for food and hydrocarbons for energy.


Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome Diarrheal Disease Shiga Toxin Enteric Infection Persistent Diarrhea 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • Richard L. Guerrant
    • 1
  1. 1.Division of Geographic MedicineUniversity of Virginia School of MedicineCharlottesvilleUSA

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