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Elimination of bancroftian filariasis (Wuchereria bancrofti) in Santa Catarina state, Brazil

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During the 1950s, three foci of Wuchereria bancrofti transmission were identified in the State of Santa Catarina, Brazil. In Florianópolis, São José da Ponta Grossa and Barra da Laguna community treatment of bancroftian filariasis with diethylcarbamazine (DEC) was performed using two distinct approaches, without vector control or improvements in sanitation. In two of the three communities only microfilaraemic individuals were treated, while in Barra da Laguna the entire population received DEC treatment regardless of their infection status. In both cases, transmission of the parasite was blocked and no new cases were detected in all localities for up to 10 years. Recently, a new survey in São José da Ponta Grossa and Barra communities revealed no microfilaria-positive individuals, including residents that were positive in the 1950s. These data confirm that transmission of W. bancrofti was interrupted in Santa Catarina, and mass treatment appears to be more effective than treatment of microfilaraemic individuals only.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 December 2000

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