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Filarial elephantiasis (Wuchereria bancrofti var. pacifica) and microfilaremia

Filarial elephantiasis (Wuchereria bancrofti var. pacifica) and microfilaremia

Annales de la Societe Belge de Medecine Tropicale 60(1): 33-45

During a survey in 1975-1976 including 40% of the population of French Polynesia, 274 cases of elephantiasis were detected. Endemic filariasis in French Polynesia is exclusively caused by Wuchereria bancrofti var. pacifica. Microfilaria were rarely found in the blood of these filariasis cases. The prevalence (percent) mean and median microfilarial densities (in 20 mm3 capillary blood) were 4.01, 14.9 and 4.5, respectively. These data are very similar to those observed in the general population: 3.62, 15.5 and 5.5 (on 22,938 individuals tested). An enrichment technique detected only 1 additional case in 35 patients. Data gathered since 1949 show that the rates of microfilaria carriers were always very similar among elephantiasis cases and the general population on all islands. These rates were high before the onset of an antifilarial control program, and subsequently decreased according to the intensity of control measures. Among 170 elephantiasis cases followed between 1960 and 1976, only 15.9% had a parasitemia during this period. The microfilaremia seemed to disappear before the onset of elephantiasis.

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Accession: 005461741

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PMID: 7008717

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