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Memórias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz
Fundação Oswaldo Cruz, Fiocruz
ISSN: 1678-8060
EISSN: 1678-8060
Vol. 99, No. 8, 2004, pp. 873-876
Bioline Code: oc04171
Full paper language: English
Document type: Research Article
Document available free of charge

Memórias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz, Vol. 99, No. 8, 2004, pp. 873-876

 en Therapy of Tungiasis: a Double-blinded Randomized Controlled Trial with Oral Ivermectin
Jörg Heukelbach; Sabine Franck & Hermann Feldmeier

Abstract

Tungiasis is an ectoparasitosis causing considerable pathology in endemic areas. Standard therapy consists of removing the embedded parasite with a sterile needle. There is no effective chemotherapy at hand. To fill this gap, a double-blinded randomized controlled trial with oral ivermectin was conducted. A total of 54 individuals (27 in the placebo group, 27 in the ivermectin group) was followed up for seven days. They presented a total of 192 lesions. Patients received either ivermectin (300 μg/kg body weight at a single dose, repeated after 24 h) or placebo. Outcome measures included the clinical stage of lesion, presence of erythema, pain, itching, signs of viability of the parasite, and total lysis of flea. The ratio of fleas with total lysis per total number of fleas was slightly higher in the ivermectin group; however, this difference was not statistically significant. There was no significant difference in any of the other outcome measures between the treatment and the placebo group. The results show that oral ivermectin is without any clinically significant efficacy against embedded sand fleas at the dose given.

Keywords
tungiasis - Tunga penetrans - therapy - ivermectin - randomized controlled trial - Brazil

 
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