Certificación serológica de la interrupción de la transmisión vectorial de la enfermedad de Chagas en Chile
Bahamonde M,María Inés
Background: In 1999 an International Commission of Experts evaluated the sanitary interventions that started in 1980 to eliminate Triatoma infestans, the biological vector of Chagas disease, to certify if the conditions needed to interrupt the transmission, were achieved. Aim: To report the data used by the International certification commission to certify the interruption of vectorial transmission of Chagas disease in Chile. Material and methods: A comparative evaluation of the prevalence of Trypanosoma cruzi antibodies in children surveyed between 1994 and 1995 and between 1995 and 1999. Results: In the first period, 5.948 children were surveyed and in the second, 5.069 children were studied. Twenty children (0.4%) were positive for Trypanosoma cruzi antibodies in the second survey. These figures were significantly lower than the 1.1% prevalence detected between 1994 and 1995. In only three of the 20 cases, the transmission through vectors was confirmed, which represents a 99.4% reduction of this way of transmission. Conclusions: Based on these findings, the Commission certified that Chile is the second country in Latin America to interrupt the vector transmission of Chagas disease. The successful public health program for Chagas disease will have a positive impact improving the quality of life of rural populations, that are most exposed to the disease. (Rev Méd Chile 2001; 129: 264-9).