by Michael J Boivin, Daniel Okitundu, Bumoko Makila-Mabe et al.
The Lancet Global Health, Vol. 5, No. 9, e936–e947, September 2017
Konzo is an irreversible upper-motor neuron disorder affecting children dependent on bitter cassava for food. The neurocognitive ability of children with konzo over time has yet to be fully documented. The authors conclude that motor and cognitive performance continues to be significantly impaired in boys with konzo at 2-year follow-up compared with boys without konzo. Because these impairments are associated in part with exposure to poorly processed cassava as measured by urinary thiocyanate, interventions are urgently needed to ensure improved processing of cassava to detoxify this food source.