Bulletin of the World Health Organization
Print version ISSN 0042-9686
TOURE, Seydou et al. Two-year impact of single praziquantel treatment on infection in the national control programme on schistosomiasis in Burkina Faso. Bull World Health Organ [online]. 2008, vol.86, n.10, pp.780-787A. ISSN 0042-9686. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0042-96862008001000014.
OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the impact on schistosomiasis of biennial treatment with praziquantel (PZQ) among school-age children in Burkina Faso, the first country that achieved full national coverage with treatment of more than 90% of the school-age population. METHODS: A cohort of 1727 schoolchildren (6-14 years old) was monitored at yearly intervals through a longitudinal survey. Additional groups of schoolchildren were monitored in cross-sectional surveys. Parasitological examinations for Schistosoma haematobium and Schistosoma mansoni were performed, and prevalence and intensity of infection before and after treatment were analysed. FINDINGS: Data from the longitudinal cohort show that a single round of PZQ treatment significantly reduced prevalence of S. haematobium infection by 87% (from 59.6% to 7.7%) and intensity of infection by 92.8% (from 94.2 to 6.8 eggs/10 ml of urine) 2 years post-treatment. The impact on infection was also confirmed by a cross-sectional survey 2 years post-treatment. Importantly, the proportion of school-age children with heavy S. haematobium infection decreased from around 25% before treatment to around 2-3% 2 years post-treatment. Cross-sectional comparison of S. haematobium infection in 7-year-old children in their first year at school, who received treatment through community-based drug delivery, also showed significant reduction in both prevalence (65.9%) and intensity of S. haematobium infection (78.4%) 2 years after single treatment. A significant reduction in S. mansoni infection was also achieved. CONCLUSION: Significant and sustained reduction in S. haematobium infection was achieved by biennial treatment in school-age children in Burkina Faso. This may provide a cost-effective treatment strategy for similar national schistosomiasis control programmes in sub-Saharan Africa.