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An observational longitudinal study to evaluate tools and strategies available for the diagnosis of Congenital Chagas Disease in a non-endemic country

AuthorsSimón, M.; Gil-Gallardo, L.J.; Asunción Iborra, M.; Carrilero, B.; López López, Manuel Carlos; Romay-Barja, M.; Murcia, L.; Thomas, María del Carmen; Benito, A.; Segovia, M.
KeywordsCongenital Chagas Disease
Diagnostic techniques
Polymerase chain reaction
Issue Date2019
CitationActa Tropica 199 (2019)
AbstractObjectives: Congenital Chagas Disease (CCD) has become a global health problem. Early diagnosis and treatment is essential for the cure of the disease. Our aim was to evaluate techniques and samples used for the diagnosis of CCD in order to improve diagnostic strategies. Methods: A total of 181 children born in Spain from Latin American Chagas-infected mothers were consecutively enrolled and studied by microhematocrit, PCR and serology tests at 0–2, 6 and 9–12 months of age and followed up when it was required. Samples of cord blood and peripheral blood were collected for T. cruzi detection by PCR. Parasite culture was performed in patients with a positive PCR. Results: Of 181 children, 7 children (3.9%) were lost to follow-up. A total of 174 children completed follow-up, 12 were diagnosed with CCD (6.9%) and 162 (93.1%) as uninfected children (negative serology tests at the end of the follow-up). Traditional parasitological diagnosis by microhematocrit had a poor performance (sensitivity was 10%), while PCR in peripheral blood showed high sensitivity (90.9%) and specificity (100%), allowing the early diagnosis of 9 infected children during the first 6-months-old. In the other 3 congenital cases, diagnosis was only possible at 12 months by serological and molecular techniques. However, PCR in cord blood showed low sensitivity (33.3%) and less specificity (96.4%) for the diagnosis. Conclusion: PCR in peripheral blood has proven to be the most adequate strategy for the diagnosis of CCD, allowing an early and reliable diagnosis.
Publisher version (URL)http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.actatropica.2019.105127
Identifiersdoi: 10.1016/j.actatropica.2019.105127
e-issn: 1873-6254
issn: 0001-706X
Appears in Collections:(IPBLN) Artículos
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