Combination therapies are a cost-effective alternative when treating visceral leishmaniasis

Combination therapies are a cost-effective alternative when treating visceral leishmaniasis

Visceral leishmaniasis is the second-deadliest parasitic disease after malaria. Each year, thousands fall victim among poor and marginalised populations in low-income countries. Filip Meheus is the first to detail the economic aspects of the disease in India, Nepal and Sudan. On Monday 16 September, Meheus will receive a PhD title at the University of Nijmegen for his research at the Institute of Tropical Medicine (ITM) in Antwerp.

Visceral leishmaniasis has become harder to control, because current treatments increasingly fail (like in Nepal with resistance to the drug miltefosine).

Meheus shows that combination therapies (the use of multiple drugs) is a cost-effective alternative to the current first-line treatments. This is mainly due to the shorter duration of treatment and the lower cost of the drugs used for combination therapies.

Combination therapies would also alleviate the enormous the disease causes in families and relieve the workload in hospitals. However, additional efforts are needed to further drop prices of some drugs (like liposomal amphotericin B) and diagnose and treat patients more quickly.

"This disease wrecks patients twice, both physically and financially. The study results offer some tools to assist them better, even where the needs are huge and the means limited," said Meheus.

The article is titled "The economic analysis of control."

More information: www.itg.be/internet/dl/Economi… trol-FilipMeheus.pdf

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Kala-azar treatment failing in Nepal

Mar 01, 2013

In a recent study, scientists have concluded that the cure rates of Miltefosine, the only oral drug for visceral leishmaniasis available, have significantly decreased. Miltefosine was introduced in the Indian subcontinent ...

Old drug shows new promise to treat leishmaniasis

Feb 02, 2012

(Medical Xpress) -- A study published yesterday shows that a drug called fexinidazole could potentially be used to treat visceral leishmaniasis, a parasitic disease that kills 50 000 to 60 000 people ...

Genetics discovery to help fight 'black fever'

Jan 08, 2013

Scientists—including a geneticist at The University of Western Australia—are a step closer to developing a vaccine against a fatally infectious parasite carried in the bite of sandflies.

Recommended for you

US lawmaker: New case raises questions on Ebola

17 minutes ago

The new case of Ebola diagnosed in New York City has raised "even more questions about procedures in treating patients and risks to Americans," a Republican committee chairman said Friday.

Aid group: Ebola contagion risk can't be zero

45 minutes ago

Despite stringent infection-control measures, the risk of Ebola's spread cannot be entirely eliminated, Doctors Without Borders said Friday after one of its doctors caught the dreaded disease while working in Guinea and went ...

WHO eyes mass Ebola vaccines by mid-2015

55 minutes ago

Hundreds of thousands of Ebola vaccine doses could be rolled out to west Africa by the middle of next year, the World Health Organization said Friday, after new cases of the killer virus were reported in New York and Mali.

User comments