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Trop Med Int Health. 2010 Jun;15(6):673-91. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-3156.2010.02521.x. Epub 2010 Apr 4.

Epidemiology and control of trachoma: systematic review.

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  • 1London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, UK.


Trachoma is the commonest infectious cause of blindness. Recurrent episodes of infection with serovars A-C of Chlamydia trachomatis cause conjunctival inflammation in children who go on to develop scarring and blindness as adults. It was estimated that in 2002 at least 1.3 million people were blind from trachoma, and currently 40 million people are thought to have active disease and 8.2 million to have trichiasis. The disease is largely found in poor, rural communities in developing countries, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa. The WHO promotes trachoma control through a multifaceted approach involving surgery, mass antibiotic distribution, encouraging facial cleanliness and environmental improvements. This has been associated with significant reductions in the prevalence of active disease over the past 20 years, but there remain a large number of people with trichiasis who are at risk of blindness.

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