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A Systematic Review of Toxocariasis: A Neglected But High-Prevalence Disease in Brazil

Paula Mayara Matos FialhoDepartamento de Saúde Coletiva, Faculdade de Ciências Médicas, Universidade Estadual de Campinas, Campinas, São Paulo, Brazil

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Carlos Roberto Silveira CorrêaDepartamento de Saúde Coletiva, Faculdade de Ciências Médicas, Universidade Estadual de Campinas, Campinas, São Paulo, Brazil

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Toxocariasis is an anthropozoonosis that occurs in all parts of the world. In particular, this disease can often be found in developing countries and in regions, where basic sanitation conditions are poor. However, industrialized countries have reported seroprevalence rates as high as 14.2% in humans. The definitive hosts of the disease are dogs and cats, whereas humans are a paratenic host. To determine the burden of toxocariasis in Brazil, we followed the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses guidelines to conduct a systematic review of the literature. Using keywords and applying the established criteria, we identified 160 publications and selected 22 articles for further analysis. The seroprevalence of toxocariasis in various regions of the country ranged from 4.2% to 65.4%. The highest prevalence was found in the northeast region, although the majority of the studies identified were from the southeast region. The findings suggest the importance of raising awareness among health professionals and public authorities about the fact that toxocariasis is a health problem.

Author Notes

* Address correspondence to Paula Mayara Matos Fialho, Departamento de Saúde Coletiva, Faculdade de Ciências Médicas, Universidade Estadual de Campinas, Rua Tessália Vieira de Camargo, 126, Cidade Universitária Zeferino Vaz, Campinas, São Paulo 13083-887, Brazil. E-mail: paulamayara2@gmail.com
† These authors contributed equally to this work.

Financial support: We thank the Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado de São Paulo (grant no. 2012/14134-6) for the PhD scholarship for PMMF.

Authors' addresses: Paula Mayara Matos Fialho and Carlos Roberto Silveira Corrêa, Departamento de Saúde Coletiva, Faculdade de Ciências Médicas, Universidade Estadual de Campinas, Campinas, São Paulo, Brazil, E-mails: paulamayara2@gmail.com and ccorrea@fcm.unicamp.br.

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