Lymphatic filariasis elimination in the African Region: progress report
Abstract1. Lymphatic filariasis in Africa is caused by a filarial worm, Wuchereria bancrofti, that is transmitted mainly by female Anopheles and Culex mosquitoes. Lymphatic filariasis occurs in 39 of the 46 Member States of the WHO African Region. It is estimated that 420 million people are at risk of the disease in the Region, representing 38% of the global burden. 2. The main complications of lymphatic filariasis are elephantiasis, lymphoedema and hydrocele. It is estimated that 4.6 million cases of lymphoedema and over 10 million cases of hydrocele occur in Africa. LF is one of the most debilitating and disfiguring diseases. The socioeconomic consequences of LF include stigma lost or diminished productivity and high treatment costs. 3. Recognizing the public health, social and economic significance of lymphatic filariasis, the Fiftieth World Health Assembly, in 1997, passed a resolution calling for the elimination of lymphatic filariasis as a global public health problem by 2020. Following the passing of the resolution, two drug manufacturers donated albendazole and ivermectin to the lymphatic filariasis programme for as long as the drugs would be required.
Regional Committee for Africa, 54. (2011). Lymphatic filariasis elimination in the African Region: progress report. http://www.who.int/iris/handle/10665/1879