Volume 87, Issue 5
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



The impact of Chagas disease is no longer restricted to endemic areas. The aim of this study is to evaluate a 2-year period of a vertical transmission screening program of infection in a tertiary care hospital in Barcelona (Spain). Two enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (recombinant and crude antigen) were performed in parallel to pregnant women at risk of infection. Discordant results were confirmed by a third diagnostic test. In the case of a positive result, the newborn was tested at birth and after 8 months of life. A total of 1,473 women met the inclusion criteria for the screening program with a resulting seroprevalence for of 3.5% (2.2–5.2% 95% confidence interval [95% CI]). One case of congenital infection was identified. Screening programs for vertically transmitted acute infection are beneficial in non-endemic areas for early detection and treatment of acute infection.


Article metrics loading...

The graphs shown below represent data from March 2017
Loading full text...

Full text loading...



  1. Schmunis GA, , 2007. Epidemiology of Chagas disease in non-endemic countries: the role of international migration. Mem Inst Oswaldo Cruz 102: 7585.[Crossref] [Google Scholar]
  2. Dias JC, Silveira AC, , 2005. Chagas disease in the Americas: current situation and perspectives. Rev Soc Bras Med Trop 38 (Suppl 2): 513. [Google Scholar]
  3. Prata A, , 2000. Clinical and epidemiological aspects of Chagas disease. Lancet Infect Dis 1: 92100.[Crossref] [Google Scholar]
  4. 2003. Congenital infection with Trypanosoma cruzi: from mechanisms of transmission to strategies for diagnosis and control. Rev Soc Bras Med Trop 36: 767771.[Crossref] [Google Scholar]
  5. Muñoz J, Coll O, Juncosa T, Verges M, del Pino M, Fumado V, , 2009. Prevalence and vertical transmission of Trypanosoma cruzi infection among pregnant Latin American women attending 2 maternity clinics in Barcelona, Spain. Clin Infect Dis 48: 17361740.[Crossref] [Google Scholar]
  6. Jackson Y, Myers C, Diana A, Marti HP, Wolff H, Chappuis F, , 2009. Congenital transmission of Chagas disease in Latin American immigrants in Switzerland. Emerg Infect Dis 15: 601603.[Crossref] [Google Scholar]
  7. Riera C, Guarro A, Kassab HE, Jorba JM, Castro M, Angrill R, , 2006. Congenital transmission of Trypanosoma cruzi in Europe (Spain): a case report. Am J Trop Med Hyg 75: 10781081. [Google Scholar]
  8. Buekens P, Almendares O, Carlier Y, Dumonteli E, Eberhard M, Gamboa-Leon R, James M, Padilla N, Wesson D, Xiong X, , 2008. Mother to child transmission of Chagas's disease in North America: why don't we do more? Matern Child Health J 12: 283286.[Crossref] [Google Scholar]
  9. Torrico F, Alonso-Vega C, Suarez E, Rodriguez P, Torrico MC, Dramaix M, , 2004. Maternal Trypanosoma cruzi infection, pregnancy outcome, morbidity, and mortality of congenitally infected and non-infected newborns in Bolivia. Am J Trop Med Hyg 70: 201209. [Google Scholar]
  10. IDESCAT, 2008. Foreign population by continents [Spanish]. Available at: www.idescat.cat. Accessed June 2011.
  11. Mora MC, Sanchez Negrette O, Marco D, Barrio A, Ciaccio M, Segura MA, Basombrío MA, , 2005. Early diagnosis of congenital Trypanosoma cruzi infection using PCR, hemoculture, and capillary concentration, as compared with delayed serology. J Parasitol 91: 14681473.[Crossref] [Google Scholar]
  12. Pirón M, Fisa R, Casamitjana N, , 2007. Development of a real-time PCR assay for Trypanosoma cruzi detection in blood samples. Acta Trop 103: 195200.[Crossref] [Google Scholar]
  13. Paricio-Talayero JM, Benlloch-Muncharaz MJ, Collar-del-Castillo JI, Rubio-Soriano A, Serrat-Perez C, Magraner-Egea J, , 2008. Epidemiological surveillance of vertically-transmitted Chagas disease at three maternity hospitals in the Valencian Community. Enferm Infecc Microbiol Clin 26: 609613.[Crossref] [Google Scholar]
  14. Ortí RM, Parada MC, , 2009. Prevalence of American Trypanosomiasis in pregnant women of a sanitary area. Valencia 2005–2007 [Spanish]. Rev Esp Salud Publica 83: 543555. [Google Scholar]
  15. Riera C, Verges M, Iniesta L, Fisa R, Gállego M, Tebar S, Portús M, , 2012. Identification of a Western blot pattern for the specific diagnosis of Trypanosoma cruzi infection in human sera. Am J Trop Med Hyg 86: 412416.[Crossref] [Google Scholar]
  16. Remesar MC, Gamba C, Colaianni IF, Puppo M, Sartor PA, Murphy EL, Neilands TB, Ridolfi MA, Leguizamón MS, Kuperman S, Del Pozo AE, , 2009. Estimation of sensitivity and specificity of several Trypanosoma cruzi antibody assays in blood donors in Argentina. Transfusion 49: 23522358.[Crossref] [Google Scholar]
  17. Russomando G, Tomassone MM, de Guillen I, Acosta N, Vera N, Almiron M, Candia N, Calcena MF, Figueredo A, , 1998. Treatment of congenital Chagas' disease diagnosed and followed up by the polymerase chain reaction. Am J Trop Med Hyg 59: 487491. [Google Scholar]
  18. Schijman A, Altcheh J, Burgos JM, Biancardi M, Bisio M, Levin MJ, Freilij H, , 2003. Aetiological treatment of congenital Chagas' disease diagnosed and monitored by the polymerase chain reaction. J Antimicrob Chemother 52: 441449.[Crossref] [Google Scholar]
  19. Chippaux JP, Salas AN, Santaya JA, , 2010. Antibody drop in newborns congenitally infected by Trypanosoma cruzi treated with benznidazole. Trop Med Int Health 15: 8793. [Google Scholar]
  20. Rassi A, Jr Rassi A, Marin-Neto JA, , 2010. Chagas disease. Lancet 375: 13881402.[Crossref] [Google Scholar]
  21. Schijman AG, Bisio M, Orellana L, Sued M, Duffy T, , 2011. International study to evaluate PCR methods for detection of Trypanosoma cruzi DNA in blood samples from Chagas disease patient. PLoS Negl Trop Dis 5: e931.[Crossref] [Google Scholar]
  22. Diez C, Manattini S, Zanuttini JC, Bottasso O, Marcipar I, , 2008. The value of molecular studies for the diagnosis of congenital Chagas disease in northeastern Argentina. Am J Trop Med Hyg 78: 624627. [Google Scholar]
  23. Mora MC, Sanchez-Negrette O, Marco D, , 2005. Early diagnosis of congenital Trypanosoma cruzi infection using PCR, hemoculture, and capillary concentration, as compared with delayed serology. J Parasitol 91: 14681473.[Crossref] [Google Scholar]
  24. Maldonado C, Albano S, Vettorazzi L, , 2004. Using polymerase chain reaction in early diagnosis of re-activated Trypanosoma cruzi infection after heart transplantation. J Heart Lung Transplant 23: 13451348.[Crossref] [Google Scholar]
  25. Bern C, Verastegui M, Gilman RH, Lafuente C, Galdos-Cardenas G, Calderon M, , 2009. Congenital Trypanosoma cruzi transmission in Santa Cruz, Bolivia. Clin Infect Dis 49: 16671674.[Crossref] [Google Scholar]

Data & Media loading...

  • Received : 07 Mar 2012
  • Accepted : 12 Aug 2012
  • Published online : 07 Nov 2012

Most Cited This Month

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error