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Boletín chileno de parasitología

Print version ISSN 0365-9402


SCHENONE, Hugo et al. Human Hydatidosis in Chile. Seroprevalence and an estimate of the number of infected people. Bol. chil. parasitol. [online]. 1999, vol.54, n.3-4, pp.70-73. ISSN 0365-9402.

Chile is located in the southwestern border of South America. The country is 4,329 km long and 96-342 wide. From north to south it is divided into five marked different biogeographical zones: deserts, steppes, bushes, forests (cattle raising) and austral (sheep raising). Population (June1999) 15,017,760 (14.6% rural). Human hydatidosis is endemic in Chile. According to Ministry of Health information about 320 cases are registered each year. In order to find out the likely prevalence of human hydatidosis in Chile,a series of serosurveys was carried out in 1988-1997 throughout the total country. By using the indirect hemagglutination reaction and ELISA for hydatidosis (tests with good sensibility and specificity) 60,790 unselected apparently healthy persons: 41,399 from urban areas (16,428 blood donors, from 13,894 delivering mothers and 11,077 middle grade school children) and 19,361 from rural areas - from randomly selected family groupings-were studied. A total individuals 82 (136/100,000) resulted positive: 36 (87/100,000) urban and 46 (241/100,000) rural, being the prevalence higher in rural areas, particularly in the southern austral zone (mean 1068/100,00). These figures agree with those observed in clinical epidemiological studies. In conformity with the present results, in the whole country 17,002 individuals should have hydatidosis: 10,318 urban and 6,784 rural. All these possible infected people, not necessarily should present pathology in the future, as it has been observed in autopsies from unselected individuals, performed at the Medico-Legal Service in Santiago, in whom 71.3% of diagnosed hydatosis with hydatid cysts in many different locations, was an autopsy finding

Keywords : hydatidosis; human; seroprevalence; estimate.

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