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Mass treatment for intestinal helminthisis control in an Amazonian endemic area in Brazil

Márcio Neves Bóia, Filipe Anibal Carvalho- Costa, Fernando Campos Sodré, Walter A. Eyer-Silva, Cristiane Cruz Lamas, Marcelo Rosadinski Lyra, Vitor Laerte Pinto Júnior, João Paulo Cantalice Filho, Ana Lucia L. Oliveira, Liège M. Abreu Carvalho, Julise B. Gross, Ana Lucia S. Sousa, Teruo Ito de Moraes, Elkin Hernán Bermudez-Aza, Ezequias Baptista Martins, José Rodrigues Coura


The objective of the present study was to estimate the prevalence of soil-transmitted helminthiasis and evaluate the sanitary conditions and the role of a mass treatment campaign for control of these infections in Santa Isabel do Rio Negro. A cross-sectional survey was carried out in 2002, to obtain data related to the sanitary conditions of the population and fecal samples for parasitological examination in 308 individuals, followed by a mass treatment with albendazole or mebendazole with coverage of 83% of the city population in 2003. A new survey was carried out in 2004, involving 214 individuals, for comparison of the prevalences of intestinal parasitosis before and after the mass treatment. The prevalences of ascariasis, trichuriasis and hookworm infection were 48%; 27% and 21% respectively in 2002. There was a significant decrease for the frequency of infections by Ascaris lumbricoides (p < 0.05; OR / 95% CI = 0.44 / 0.30 - 0.65), Trichuris trichiura (p < 0.05; OR / 95% CI = 0.37 / 0.22 - 0.62), hookworm (p < 0.05; OR / 95% CI = 0.03 / 0.01 - 0.15) and helminth poliparasitism (p < 0.05; OR / 95% CI = 0.16 / 0.08 - 0.32). It was also noticed a decrease of prevalence of infection by Entamoeba histolytica / dispar (p < 0.05; OR / 95% CI = 0.30 / 0.19 - 0.49) and non-pathogenic amoebas. It was inferred that a mass treatment can contribute to the control of soil-transmitted helminthiasis as a practicable short-dated measure. However, governmental plans for public health, education and urban infrastructure are essential for the sustained reduction of prevalences of those infections.


Intestinal helminthiasis;Mass Treatment;Control;Amazon

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