Travel Health Advice - American trypanosomiasis (Chagas disease)
American trypanosomiasis (Chagas disease)
What is it? Chagas is a blood parasite that causes heart complications and gastrointestinal conditions. How is it transmitted? By blood-sucking triatomine bugs and also blood transfusion from an infected donor. Where is it present? Mexico and Central and South America where it is found in the walls of cheap housing. Level of risk? Low. What can I do to prevent getting it? Avoid exposure to triatomine bugs, treat rural housing with insecticides, and avoid sleeping with rural population inside their houses. Use bednets. Treatment? Reliable treatments are available but efficacy is increased substantially by early treatment.