5 Dec 2017

Samoa, American Samoa and WHO talk filiarisis

10:16 am on 5 December 2017

A team of doctors and medical personnel form Samoa's Ministry of Health and the World Health Organisation has been in American Samoa to discuss with local health authorities a strategy to combat lymphatic filiarisis.

Person in hospital bed.

Photo: 123RF

WHO official Dr Jonathon King said that there had been a resurgence in the disease and it had been found in children.

Known in Samoan as mumu, filiarisis is characterised by massive swelling of the legs.

Dr King said that because the disease is spread by mosquitoes, they aim to piggy back on vector control programme that are now being done in the territory to stop the spread of dengue, zika and other mosquito borne illnesses.

He said they were planning to have a mass treatment campaign similar to one carried out in American Samoa a number of years ago.