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Rev Inst Med Trop Sao Paulo. 2009 Jul-Aug;51(4):179-83.

Lymph scrotum: an unusual urological presentation of lymphatic filariasis. A case series study.

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Centro de Pesquisas Aggeu Magalhães, Serviço de Referência Nacional em Filarioses, Fundação Oswaldo Cruz, Recife, PE, Brasil.


Lymphatic filariasis (LF) causes a wide range of clinical signs and symptoms, including urogenital manifestations. Transmission control and disability/morbidity management/control are the two pillars of the overall elimination strategy for LF. Lymph scrotum is an unusual urological clinical presentation of LF with important medical, psychological, social and economic repercussions. A retrospective case series study was conducted on outpatients attended at the National Reference Service for Filariasis, in an endemic area for filariasis (Recife, Brazil), between 2000 and 2007. Over this period, 6,361 patients were attended and seven cases with lymph scrotum were identified. Mean patient age was 45 years (range, 26 to 64 years). Mean disease duration was 8.5 years (range, two to 15 years). All patients had evidence of filarial infection from at least one laboratory test (parasitological, antigen investigation or 'filarial dance sign' on ultrasound). Six patients presented histories of urological surgery. The authors highlight the importance of the association between filarial infection and the inadequate surgical and clinical management of hydrocele in an endemic area, as risk factors for lymph scrotum. Thus, filarial infection should be routinely investigated in all individuals presenting urological morbidity within endemic areas, in order to identify likely links in the transmission chain.

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