Administration of Triclabendazole Is Safe and Effective in Controlling Fascioliasis in an Endemic Community of the Bolivian Altiplano

Fidel Villegas, René Angles, René Barrientos, Gary Barrios, María Adela Valero, Kamal Hamed, Heiner Grueninger, Steven K. Ault, Antonio Montresor, Dirk Engels, Santiago Mas-Coma, Albis Francesco Gabrielli

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Abstract

Background: The Bolivian northern Altiplano is characterized by a high prevalence of Fasciola hepatica infection. In order to assess the feasibility, safety and efficacy of large-scale administration of triclabendazole as an appropriate public health measure to control morbidity associated with fascioliasis, a pilot intervention was implemented in 2008. Materials and Methods: Schoolchildren from an endemic community were screened for fascioliasis and treated with a single administration of triclabendazole (10 mg/kg). Interviews to assess the occurrence of adverse events were conducted on treatment day, one week later, and one month after treatment. Further parasitological screenings were performed three months after treatment and again two months later (following a further treatment) in order to evaluate the efficacy of the intervention. Results: Ninety infected children were administered triclabendazole. Adverse events were infrequent and mild. No serious adverse events were reported. Observed cure rates were 77.8% after one treatment and 97.8% after two treatments, while egg reduction rates ranged between 74% and 90.3% after one treatment, and between 84.2% and 99.9% after two treatments. The proportion of high-intensity infections (≥400 epg) decreased from 7.8% to 1.1% after one treatment and to 0% after two treatments. Conclusion: Administration of triclabendazole is a feasible, safe and efficacious public health intervention in an endemic community in the Bolivian Altiplano, suggesting that preventive chemotherapy can be applied to control of fascioliasis. Further investigations are needed to define the most appropriate frequency of treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere1720
JournalPLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Volume6
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2012

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