The 2020 Deadline to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis Has Been Extended to 2028 in Nepal

The 2020 Deadline to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis Has Been Extended to 2028 in Nepal
July 8, 2021 Editorial Reszon

Lymphatic Filariasis (LF) refers to a parasitic disease that causes Lymphedema, extreme swelling in the arms and legs, but can also occur in breasts, genitalia, and scrotum. Lymphedema is caused by malfunction of the lymph system that results in fluid collection and swelling. The condition is also known as Elephantiasis.

WHO reported 51 million people were infected as of 2018. In 2019, 859 million people in 50 countries were living in areas that require preventive chemotherapy to stop the spread of infection. As of 2021, Elephantiasis infects 120 million people in 73 different countries, throughout the tropics and sub-tropics of Asia, Africa, the Western Pacific, and parts of the Caribbean and South America. The World Health Organization (WHO) has recognized the disease as a major public health problem, with an increasing prevalence worldwide.

Nepal is one of the 73 countries in the listing. Nepal conducted LF mapping in 2001 and 2005 and remapping in 2012 by using ICT (Immuno chromatography Test). Based on the survey, morbidity reporting and geo-ecological comparability sixty-one districts of the country were mapped as endemic for Elephantiasis. Transmission assessment surveys for lymphatic filariasis is carried out by The Epidemiology and Disease Control Division in mountainous districts to assess the prevalence of the disease in those areas. Although mass drug administration is carried out for five rounds every year, it has not yet come under control, probably because of extremely high baseline prevalence.

According to Panta, an entomologist at Vector-Borne Disease Research and Training Center in Hetauda, lack of awareness, rumors about side effects of medicines, and the prevalence of floating populations were among the reasons for poor coverage and failure of the programmes. Therefore, The Health Ministry, which had committed to eliminate the disease by 2020, has to extend the deadline to 2028.

Patient infected with LF who have microfilaraemia should receive antifilarial drug treatment (mectizan and albendazole) to eliminate microfilariae. Therefore, early diagnosis is the key.

Brugia Rapid Test is a single use lateral flow immunoassay rapid test intended to qualitatively detect specific IgG4 antibodies to Brugia malayi and/or Brugia timori in specimen samples such as human whole blood or serum/plasma. The kit comes in the pack size of 25 test cassette format and the screening results can be obtained within 15-20 minutes.

You may find the following demonstration videos to learn step-to-step guide on instruction for use of Reszon Brugia Rapid Test Kit.

Instruction for use for Serum or Plasma samples

Instruction for use for Whole Blood

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  2. Sumner, S. (12th March 2021). Eliminating Neglected Tropical Diseases. Borgen Magazine. Accessed on 6th July 2021.
  3. Poudel, A. (17th January 2021). Elephantiasis survey planned in 12 districts in mountains. The Kathmandu Post. Accessed on 6th July 2021.
  4. Poudel, A. (2nd March 2021). Drive against elephantiasis postponed. The Kathmandu Post. Accessed on 6th July 2021.
  5. World Health Organization. (18th May 2021). Lymphatic filariasis. WHO. Accessed on 6th July 2021.