Kala-azar Disease - DTE - 10/01/23

Kala-azar cases in India declined by 98.7% between 2007 and 2022, from 44,533 to 834 and 632 endemic blocks (99.8%) spread across Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand, and West Bengal have received elimination status (less than one case per 10,000).
-It is also known as Visceral Leishmaniasis or Black Fever or Dumdum Fever.
-It is a deadly parasitic disease caused by the protozoa parasite Leishmania and mainly affects the people living in Africa, Asia and Latin America. The disease can cause death, if left untreated.

->Global and National Status:
-According to the World Health Organization (WHO), Kala-azar is the second deadliest parasitic disease in the world, and as of November, 2022, about 89% of global cases are reported from eight countries: Brazil, Eritrea, Ethiopia, India, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, and Sudan.
-India contributes about 11.5% of total cases of Kala-azar reported globally. Over 90% of kala-azar cases in India are reported from Bihar and Jharkhand, while Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal have achieved their elimination targets at the block level.

->Transmission: It is transmitted to humans by the bite of an infected female phlebotomine sandfly.

->Signs and Symptoms: Fever, weight loss, anemia, and enlargement of the liver and spleen.

->Prevention: Prevention of kala-azar involves measures to reduce the breeding sites of sandflies and to protect people from sandfly bites.

->Treatment: The treatment of kala-azar involves the use of drugs, such as sodium stibogluconate and meglumine antimoniate.

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