Volume 82, Issue 3
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



It is unclear how the prevalence of clinically active trachoma correlates with the prevalence of ocular chlamydial infection at the community level. In 24 villages from a cluster-randomized clinical trial of mass azithromycin distributions in Ethiopia, the correlation between the prevalence of clinical activity (on examination) and chlamydial infection (by polymerase chain reaction) was moderately strong before mass antibiotic treatments (Pearson's correlation coefficient = 0.75, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.52–0.87), but decreased at each time point during four biannual treatments (at 24 months, = 0.15, 95% CI = −0.14–0.41). One year after the final treatment, the correlation coefficient had increased, but not to the pre-treatment level ( = 0.55, 95% CI = 0.30–0.73). In a region with hyperendemic trachoma, conjunctival examination was a useful indicator of the prevalence of chlamydial infection before treatments, less useful during mass treatments, but regained utility by one year after treatments had stopped.


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  • Received : 08 Jun 2009
  • Accepted : 16 Nov 2009

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