Volume 83, Issue 2
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



Control of human African trypanosomiasis (HAT) in the Democratic Republic of Congo is based on mass population screening by mobile teams; a costly and labor-intensive approach. We hypothesized that blood samples collected on filter paper by village health workers and processed in a central laboratory might be a cost-effective alternative. We estimated sensitivity and specificity of micro-card agglutination test for trypanosomiasis (micro-CATT) and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA)/ on filter paper samples compared with parasitology-based case classification and used the results in a Monte Carlo simulation of a lot quality assurance sampling (LQAS) approach. Micro-CATT and ELISA/ showed acceptable sensitivity (92.7% [95% CI 87.4–98.0%] and 82.2% [95% CI 75.3–90.4%]) and very high specificity (99.4% [95% CI 99.0–99.9%] and 99.8% [95% CI 99.5–100%]), respectively. Conditional on high sample size per lot (≥ 60%), both tests could reliably distinguish a 2% from a zero prevalence at village level. Alternatively, these tests could be used to identify individual HAT suspects for subsequent confirmation.


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  • Received : 07 Dec 2009
  • Accepted : 13 May 2010
  • Published online : 05 Aug 2010

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