Cystic echinococcosis in South America: A call for action

Translated title of the contribution: Cystic echinococcosis in South America: A call for action

Carlos F. Pavletic, Edmundo Larrieu, Eduardo A. Guarnera, Natalia Casas, Pilar Irabedra, Ciro Ferreira, Julio Sayes, Cesar M. Gavidia, Eduardo Caldas, Michael Laurence Zini Lise, Melody Maxwell, Marcos Arezo, Ana Maria Navarro, Marco A.N. Vigilato, Ottorino Cosivi, Marcos Espinal, Victor J. Del Rio Vilas

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


Cystic echinococcosis (CE) or hydatidosis, a parasitic zoonosis caused by a cestode of the family Taeniidae, species Echinococcus granulosus, is endemic in Argentina, Chile, Peru, Uruguay, and southern Brazil. This report presents CE figures for these five countries in 2009 - 2014 and proposes indicators to measure national control programs. Nearly 5 000 new CE cases were diagnosed annually in the five countries during the study period. The average case fatality rate was 2.9%, which suggests that CE led to approximately 880 deaths in these countries during the 6-year period. CE cases that required secondary or tertiary health care had average hospital stays of 10.6 days, causing a significant burden to health systems. The proportion of new cases (15%) in children less than 15 years of age suggests ongoing transmission. Despite figures showing that CE is not under control in South America, the long-standing implementation of national and local control programs in three of the five countries has achieved reductions in some of the indicators. The Regional Initiative for the Control of CE, which includes the five countries and provides a framework for networking and collaboration, must intensify its efforts.

Translated title of the contributionCystic echinococcosis in South America: A call for action
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere42
JournalRevista Panamericana de Salud Publica/Pan American Journal of Public Health
StatePublished - 2017

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 Pan American Health Organization. All rights reserved.


  • Argentina
  • Brazil
  • Chile
  • Echinococcosis granulosus
  • Peru
  • Prevention & control
  • South America
  • Uruguay
  • Zoonoses


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