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Trans R Soc Trop Med Hyg. 1993 Mar-Apr;87(2):227-9.

Efficacy of ivermectin in the treatment of concomitant Mansonella perstans infections in onchocerciasis patients.

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  • 1Institute of Tropical Medicine, University of Tübingen, Federal Republic of Germany.


As part of an ivermectin dose-ranging study of onchocerciasis patients in Togo, 55 onchocerciasis patients with concomitant mansonelliasis received single oral doses either of ivermectin (100 to 200 micrograms/kg body weight) or placebo. As expected, Onchocerca volvulus microfilariae in the skin were greatly reduced in number soon after drug treatment, but microfilariae of Mansonella perstans reacted differently. Microfilarial densities of M. perstans were assessed with a filtration technique both before, and 4 times after, treatment. In untreated patients microfilarial densities were stable until the end of the study at 6 months. In patients receiving ivermectin, microfilarial densities dropped on average to less than 60% of the pre-treatment level and remained there until the final post-treatment examination. This partial reduction was probably not caused by a microfilaricidal effect of ivermectin, but rather by an altered distribution of microfilariae in the peripheral blood and in a suspected microfilarial reservoir.

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