Endemic Filariasis in Thakurgaon, East Pakistan

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  • Pakistan Medical Research Center and Malaria Institute of Pakistan, Mohakhali, Dacca 12, East Pakistan
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Thakurgaon, an area of 645 km2 in Dinajpur District of East Pakistan, was surveyed to determine the prevalence and distribution of human filariasis. Enumeration of microfilariae and clinical manifestations was obtained from peripheral blood smears and physical examinations of 9,624 inhabitants. The microfilaria rate of 16.8% represented infection by Wuchereria bancrofti of nocturnal periodicity. The clinical manifestation rate of 10.1% consisted primarily of genital hydrocele and elephantiasis of the scrotum in the male population. Lymphedema and elephantiasis of the limbs were rarely observed in either sex. Microfilaria infection and clinical manifestation rates increased with ascending age group. An endemicity rate of 24.2%, and a median microfilaria density of 14.0 microfilariae per 20 mm3 of peripheral blood, indicated a moderately endemic focus of filariasis that serves as a reservoir of infection and constitutes a significant public health problem in Thakurgaon.

Author Notes

Present address: Institute of International Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Maryland, Baltimore, Maryland 21201.