How is Chagas disease (American trypanosomiasis) prevented?

Updated: Apr 26, 2019
  • Author: Louis V Kirchhoff, MD, MPH; Chief Editor: Pranatharthi Haran Chandrasekar, MBBS, MD  more...
  • Print
Answer

No vaccination is available for T cruzi infection, and primary chemoprophylaxis in persons who plan to visit endemic regions is not recommended because of the extremely low risk of the infection in such circumstances (only 5 such cases have been reported [177, 178, 179] ).

It has been demonstrated in major portions of the endemic range that vector-borne transmission of T cruzi to humans can be achieved through improvement of housing conditions, use of residual insecticides, and education of persons at risk for acquiring the infection.

Transmission of T cruzi via transfusion of contaminated blood can be eliminated with serologic identification and permanent deferral of infected donors.

Although some risk factors for congenital transmission of T cruzi have been identified, [40, 180] no approaches for reducing this risk have been defined. The critical element in controlling congenital Chagas disease, beyond reducing the prevalence of chronic T cruzi infection in women of childbearing age, is the thorough parasitologic and serologic evaluation of babies born to mothers with T cruzi infection.

Personal prophylaxis

Secondary chemoprophylaxis to reduce the risk of reactivation of T cruzi infection in persons with concomitant HIV infection is not recommended.

Laboratory personnel who work with T cruzi or infected vectors should take protective measures appropriate for this risk group 2 organism.

Persons who travel to endemic areas should avoid sleeping in primitive buildings and should take general measures to protect themselves from insects.


Did this answer your question?
Additional feedback? (Optional)
Thank you for your feedback!