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The City Council and the Arrixaca Tropical Medicine Unit organize an information session on Chagas disease (08/05/2017)

The Town Council of Totana and the Tropical Medicine Unit of the Virgen de la Arrixaca University Clinic Hospital of Murcia organize an information session on Chagas disease on Friday, June 2 at the "La Cárcel" Sociocultural Center in From 8:00 p.m.

The session is basically addressed to the Latin American population residing in Totana that in its day could be exposed, in their countries of origin, to its contagion;

A parasitic infection produced by the bite of an insect, vinchuca, which does not exist in Spain.

The Mayor of Totana, Juan José Cánovas, recently met with the director of the Tropical Medicine Unit of Arrixaca, Dr. Manuel Segovia, who is also a professor of Microbiology at the University of Murcia, in order to coordinate joint actions That allow the organization of this information session in this municipality.

The initiative will also have a typical gastronomic tasting that same day as part of an awareness campaign that this year has decided to target the population of Bolivian nationality resident in the Region of Murcia.

Spain is the country of the world outside the considered endemic zone, that extends mainly in the rural zones of South America, that more patients diagnose and treats.

Since 2006, the Tropical Medicine Unit has detected 2,200 Chagas cases in the Region.

This is a record figure, since a third of all diagnoses of Chagas disease in Spain have occurred in Murcia, something that is not due to a higher prevalence but to an active search for new cases through prevention campaigns among the resident Latin American community In this autonomous community.

Of these, more than 1,700 have been treated etiologically and are being followed up, representing 30% of all patients treated with this disease in Spain.

This high number of patients in medical follow-up of a disease as serious and silent as Chagas disease is achieved, among other initiatives, thanks to successive information campaigns that, driven from the Ministry of Health with the collaboration of patient associations And the media, are intended for potentially infected persons.

Therefore, on June 4, an annual open day of the Tropical Medicine Unit of the Arrixaca will be held, which will open on Sunday to facilitate access to patients, which is why two days earlier it is intended to give Meet in Totana its celebration.

The objective of this initiative is to reach all affected by this disease and enable an early treatment to avoid complications arising from the disease and its congenital transmission.

According to WHO estimates, this disease affects between eight and twelve million people and causes about 12,500 deaths each year.

In Latin America it is transmitted mainly by the bite of a bedbug that feeds on the blood of animals and humans.

In Spain the possible route of transmission is from mother to child, since other avenues of infection (donations of blood and organs) are controlled.

The Arrixaca Tropical Medicine Unit has been operating for 10 years and has five professionals working there (two specialists in tropical medicine, one nurse, one researcher and one secretary).

The diagnosis is easily performed by a blood test.

The sooner the diagnosis is made, the better the patient's prognosis.

Several drugs are available for treatment.

The most effective and unique authorized in Spain in Benznidazole.

This drug, very expensive, is financed almost one hundred percent by the Murcian Health Service.

This year marks the tenth anniversary of the implementation of the Tropical Medicine Unit of the Arrixaca, for which a series of scientific and informative activities on neglected tropical diseases are planned for this spring and in the fall.

Source: Ayuntamiento de Totana

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