Baseline drivers of lymphatic filariasis in Burkina Faso

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Michelle C. Stanton *
David H. Molyneux
Dominique Kyelem
Roland W. Bougma
Benjamin G. Koudou
Louise A. Kelly-Hope
(*) Corresponding Author:
Michelle C. Stanton | michelle.stanton@liverpool.ac.uk

Abstract

Lymphatic filariasis (LF) is a parasitic disease that is endemic throughout sub-Saharan Africa, infecting approximately 40 million people. In Burkina Faso, mass drug administration (MDA) for LF with ivermectin and albendazole has been ongoing since 2001, and by 2006 all endemic health districts were receiving MDA with a therapeutic coverage of at least 65%. As MDA activities scale down, the focus is now on targeting areas where LF transmission persists with alternative elimination strategies. This study explored the relationship between village-level, baseline LF prevalence data collected in 2000 with publicly available meteorological, environmental and demographic variables in order to determine the factors that influence the geographical distribution of the disease. A fitted multiple logistic regression model indicated that the length of the rainy season, variability in normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and population density were significantly positively associated with LF prevalence, whereas total annual rainfall, average June-September temperature, mean NDVI, elevation and the area of cotton crops were significantly negatively associated. This model was used to produce a baseline LF risk map for Burkina Faso. An extended model which incorporated potential socio-demographic risk factors also indicated a significant positive relationship between LF prevalence and wealth. In overlaying the baseline LF risk map with the number of MDA rounds, plus an insecticide-treated net (ITN) ownership measure, the central southern area of the country was highlighted as an area where baseline LF prevalence was high and ITN coverage relatively low (<50%), while at least 10 rounds of MDA had been undertaken, suggesting that more concentrated efforts will be needed to eliminate the disease in these areas.

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