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Revista Española de Salud Pública

versión On-line ISSN 2173-9110versión impresa ISSN 1135-5727


VILAJELIU BALAGUE, Alba et al. Imported parasitic diseases in the immigrant population in Spain. Rev. Esp. Salud Publica [online]. 2014, vol.88, n.6, pp.783-802. ISSN 2173-9110.

Background: Migration has contributed to the emergence of certain infectious diseases in host countries. In Spain the number of immigrants has increased exponentially in recent decades. The aim of this review is to identify and analyze the available information on imported parasitic diseases in immigrant population in our country. Methods: A scope review of original articles published on imported parasitic diseases between 1998 and 2012. Study populations from Latin America, Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe and individuals who are under the definition of an immigrant from International Organization for Migration were included. The literature search was performed in the Medline and MEDES-MEDicina databases. Results: A total of 51 descriptive studies were included in the analysis. Most immigrants attended at referral health facilities were originally from sub-Saharan Africa (between 16%-87%), followed by Latin America (13%-37%), while Asia was the region less represented (0.2%-8.8%). A considerable proportion (6.5-31%) of inmigrants that attended to referal units of tropical medicine or inmigrant health, and that were originally from Latin America, particularly those from Bolivia, are affected by the Chagas disease, and several cases of mother-to-child transmission have been registered in our country. Conclusion: Imported parasitosis is a frequent diagnosis among migrant population. This review highlight the impact that migration has had on the emergence of certain imported parasitic diseases, being Chagas disease the most paradigmatic example.

Palabras clave : Emigrants and Immigrants; Parasitosis; Malaria; Chagas disease; Spain.

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