Surgically confirmed cases of cystic echinococcosis from Baluchistan Province, Pakistan for the years 2011-2018.
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INTRODUCTION: Cystic echinococcosis (CE) is a parasitic zoonotic disease caused by the larval stage of Echinococcus granulosus tapeworms. It has a worldwide geographic distribution and can threaten the livestock industry and human health in endemic areas, including Pakistan. CE prevalence is high in Pakistan due to lack of local knowledge about disease transmission and a lack of control measures. The Pakistan province of Baluchistan shares a border with Iran and Afghanistan and is largely agricultural. However, little is known about E. granulosus transmission in this region. METHODS: Information on surgically confirmed cases of CE in Baluchistan Province was obtained through evaluation of paraffin fixed cyst samples and patient records obtained from three local hospitals for the years 2011-2018. RESULTS: A total of 22 paraffin fixed samples were collected during the study period. The majority of cysts were obtained from the liver (9/22; 40.9%), with anatomical location not available for two of the cysts. Demographic information was available for 18 cases. Females made up 61.1% (11/18) of the cases. The largest numbers of cases were found in the 31-40 years age group (5/18; 22.7%). DISCUSSION: This study shows that Echinococcus spp. parasites are circulating in the study area. In order to control the disease, a comprehensive regional surveillance and control program is needed.