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Published On: Tue, Jan 14th, 2014

Brazil: Leishmaniasis deaths in Mato Grosso do Sul up 44% since 2010

The number of fatalities due to the parasitic disease, visceral leishmaniasis has increased by 43.75 percent in the  Central-Western Brazilian state of Mato Grosso do Sul, according to a Campo Grande News report today (computer translated).

Phlebotomus papatasi sand fly--a vector of leishmaniasis Image/CDC

Phlebotomus papatasi sand fly–a vector of leishmaniasis
Image/CDC

Based on data from the SES (State Health Department), the state has reported an 15% increase in leishmaniasis deaths from 2013 compared to the previous year, despite there being less total cases.

From January to November 20, 2013,  207 cases were reported with 23 deaths from the disease. In 2012, 303 cases with 20 deaths were recorded.

According to the report, in the last three years the cases of deaths has been increasing in the state. In 2010, there were 214 cases and 18 deaths in 2011 were 273 with 16 deaths.

What is leishmaniasis?

Leishmaniasis is a parasitic disease spread by the bite of the female sandfly.

There are different forms of leishmaniasis.

  • Cutaneous leishmaniasis affects the skin and mucous membranes. Skin sores usually start at the site of the sandfly bite. In a few people, sores may develop on mucous membranes.
  • Systemic, or visceral, leishmaniasis affects the entire body. This form occurs 2 – 8 months after a person is bitten by the sandfly. Most people do not remember having a skin sore. This form can lead to deadly complications. The parasites damage the immune system by decreasing the numbers of disease-fighting cells.

Cases of leishmaniasis have been reported on all continents except Australia and Antarctica.

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About the Author

- Writer, Co-Founder and Executive Editor of The Global Dispatch. Robert has been covering news in the areas of health, world news and politics for a variety of online news sources. He is also the Editor-in-Chief of the website, Outbreak News Today and hosts the podcast, Outbreak News Interviews on iTunes, Stitcher and Spotify Robert is politically Independent and a born again Christian Follow @bactiman63

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