Cadernos de Saúde Pública
On-line version ISSN 1678-4464
BARBOSA, Constança Simões et al. An outbreak of acute schistosomiasis at Porto de Galinhas beach, Pernambuco, Brazil . Cad. Saúde Pública [online]. 2001, vol.17, n.3, pp. 725-728. ISSN 1678-4464. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0102-311X2001000300028.
We recently confirmed several cases of acute schistosomiasis in Porto de Galinhas beach, Northeast Brazil. A total of 662 patients were diagnosed by parasitological and clinical examinations. The infection likely occurred during the September 7 national holiday, when heavy rainfall flooded the Ipojuca River and people were infected when the water covered their yards. Families were continuously exposed to infection for a period of three weeks until the water had completely dried up. Previous investigation suggests that snail vectors were introduced as a result of landfill in marshy areas. The swamp-flooding of such areas facilitated the emergence of slums surrounded by snail breeding sites. Heavy rainfall caused open-air sewage ditches to overflow, allowing for infection of snails by Schistosoma mansoni. Thus, continuous floods were responsible for the spread of human infection. Clinical and laboratory results identified 62% of acute cases of S. mansoni. Complementary studies are being conducted to define the impact and epidemiological meaning of the acute schistosomiasis outbreak.
Keywords : Acute Schistosomiasis; Schistosomiasis Control; Schistosomiasis Outbreak.