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Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2012 Nov;87(5):837-42. doi: 10.4269/ajtmh.2012.12-0086. Epub 2012 Oct 1.

Prevalence and risk factors for Chagas disease in pregnant women in Casanare, Colombia.

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Grupo de Parasitología, Instituto Nacional de Salud, Bogotá, Colombia.


Knowledge of the prevalence and risk factors associated with maternal infection is the first step to develop a surveillance system for congenital transmission of Chagas disease. We conducted a cross-sectional study in Casanare, a disease-endemic area in Colombia. A total of 982 patients were enrolled in the study. A global prevalence of Trypanosoma cruzi infection of 4.0% (95% confidence interval [CI] = 2.8-5.3%) was found. Multivariate analysis showed that the most important risk-associated factors were age > 29 years (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] = 3.4, 95% CI = 0.9-12.4), rural residency (aOR = 2.2, 95% CI = 1.0-4.6), low education level (aOR = 10.2, 95% CI = 1.6-82.7), and previous knowledge of the vector (aOR = 2.2, 95% CI = 1.0-4.9). Relatives and siblings of infected mothers showed a prevalence of 9.3%. These findings may help physicians to investigate congenital cases, screen Chagas disease in siblings and relatives, and provide early treatment to prevent the chronic complications of Chagas disease.

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