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Year : 2014  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 86-92

Travels and tourism are drivers for trichinellosis

Department of Parasitology, Paris Descartes University, Assistance Publique, Hôpitaux de Paris, Paris, France

Correspondence Address:
Jean Dupouy-Camet
Department of Parasitology, Paris Descartes University, Assistance Publique, Hôpitaux de Paris, 27 rue du Faubourg Saint Jacques, 75014 Paris
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/1687-7942.149555

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Background Acquiring trichinellosis while traveling abroad is not a new phenomenon and imported cases are regularly reported worldwide. Cases contracted abroad and reported by the French National Reference Centre for Trichinella (NRCT) are analyzed here. Results Since 1998, 28 imported cases, representing 37% of all cases, were reported to the NRCT, with a mean annual incidence of two cases. Between 1975 and 1998, 40 imported cases represented only 1.5% of all identified cases, but with a comparable mean annual incidence of 1.6 cases. The incidence of imported cases could even have decreased since 1998 as the number of international travelers increased during that period. Since 1998, most cases were acquired in Canada from bear meat (hunters). Some cases were acquired in West Africa from warthog meat, in Laos from pork, and one case, in Algeria, was because of the consumption of jackal meat. Discussion These imported cases are most likely to occur in countries where the habit of eating raw meat is common and may show a high transmission in some regions where the disease is or had become unknown (e.g. Senegal, Laos, etc.). Backpackers, adventure travelers, or hunters will certainly be at a higher risk and should be informed about the risks of eating raw meat (pork, game, or reptile meat) and should be discouraged from illegally importing potentially infected meat that could introduce the parasite in Trichinella-free areas. Conclusion Travelers can be good indicators of the emergence of the parasitosis in a given country. Imported cases are good indicators of the epidemiology of the disease in countries where the original infection occurred.

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