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RISK FACTORS FOR TRYPANOSOMA CRUZI HUMAN INFECTION IN BARINAS STATE, VENEZUELA

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  • 1 Facultad de Ciencias de la Salud, Centro Nacional de Referencia de Flebótomos y Otros Vectores, Universidad de Carabobo, Maracay, Venezuela; Dirección General de Salud Ambiental, Ministerio de Salud, Maracay, Venezuela; Coordinación Regional de Salud Ambiental y Contraloría Sanitaria, Ministerio de Salud, Barinas, Venezuela

This study attempted to quantify the transmission of Trypanosoma cruzi in children less than 15 years of age in Barinas State, Venezuela and investigate risk factors for infection. Among 3,296 children, 4 (0.12%) were seropositive. The mother of one child also was also seropositive, which suggested that congenital transmission is a possible risk factor for Chagas disease in this area. Seroprevalence among the dwellers of 10 localities was 3.3%. Rhodnius prolixus was detected in 7 localities and in 8% of 125 dwellings. A multivariate logistic regression model showed that infection was associated with age, a dirt floor, and distance from houses to palm trees. The risk of infection is increased by the presence of adventitious sylvatic R. prolixus and transient or residual colonies. Insecticide spraying does not seem justified in this scenario, a finding that was also observed in other Latin American countries. New methods are therefore needed for Chagas disease control programs.

Author Notes

Reprint requests: M. Dora Feliciangeli, Facultad de Ciencias de la Salud, Centro Nacional de Referencia de Flebótomos y Otros Vectores–BIOMED, Universidad de Carabobo, Sede Aragua, Apartado 4873, Maracay, Venezuela, Telephone: 58-243-242-5822, Fax: 58-243-242-5333, E-mail: mdora@movistar.net.ve, spinicrassa@yahoo.com.
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