PATNA: With a view to eliminating lymphatic filariasis (LF), the state health department has started mass drug administration (MDA) in the districts of Aurangabad, Sheikhpura and Sheohar. A combination of three drugs – ivermectin, diethylcarbamazine, and albendazole (IDA) – is given to everyone except children under 5, pregnant women, and seriously ill people in areas affected.
According to Dr Bipin Sinha, senior manager of the filariasis control program, MDA is a critical pillar in the LF elimination strategy.
“Several teams have been formed for marketing authorization for anti-filarial drugs using a triple therapeutic regimen (IDA). Rapid response teams have also been formed at the bloc level to deal with any adverse situation, ”Sinha said.
Dr Rajesh Pandey, State Coordinator for NTDs (Neglected Tropical Diseases), stressed: “LF, which is spread by infected mosquitoes, is one of the leading causes of long-term disability around the world. . A person is usually infected in their childhood, but remains asymptomatic for several years before developing lymphedema (swelling of an arm or leg) or hydrocele (swelling of the scrotum). Some people also develop tropical pulmonary eosinophilia and have symptoms such as passing milky urine (chyluria).
He added, “Severe lymphedema, which is debilitating and incurable, requires lifelong treatment. It can be easily avoided by consuming anti-filarial drugs given once a year.
The triple LF triple therapy regimen launch event in the three districts was hosted by the State Health Society and supported by the World Health Organization, Global Health Strategies, Project Concern International, and the Center for Advocacy and Research.