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Most guidelines for Chagas disease recommend the performance of two serological tests in order to detect it. However, inconclusive results may arise from this strategy. The aim was to describe whether serological follow-up together with the patient's clinical characteristics could clarify the outcome of patients with initial inconclusive test results. In this retrospective case series, all results of Chagas disease serological tests and outpatient visits recorded from 2004 to 2008 were screened for inclusion. The inclusion criterion was clinical suspicion of chronic Chagas disease and the exclusion criteria were previous diagnosis of Chagas disease, suspicion of acute Chagas disease, and serological tests with no corresponding medical evaluation. A total of 1,732 patients were analyzed. Chronic Chagas disease prevalence was 21.1%. After the initial set of serological tests, 2.9% of patients had inconclusive test results. Most of these patients had definite diagnosis after clinical follow-up and the repetition of serological tests in a new blood sample. Loss to follow-up while partaking in the diagnostic investigation reached 17.7%. The prevalence of initial inconclusive serological tests for chronic Chagas disease is low. Clinical evaluations and follow-up clarify the definite diagnosis. Noncompliance to follow-up is a frequent problem. Strategies to reduce inconclusive results and noncompliance are discussed.
Instituto de Pesquisa Clínica Evandro Chagas (IPEC), Fundação Oswaldo Cruz, Av. Brasil 4365, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, 21040-900, Brazil, firstname.lastname@example.org.
This article was published in the following journal.
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A disease of the CARDIAC MUSCLE developed subsequent to the initial protozoan infection by TRYPANOSOMA CRUZI. After infection, less than 10% develop acute illness such as MYOCARDITIS (mostly in children). The disease then enters a latent phase without clinical symptoms until about 20 years later. Myocardial symptoms of advanced CHAGAS DISEASE include conduction defects (HEART BLOCK) and CARDIOMEGALY.
Infection with the protozoan parasite TRYPANOSOMA CRUZI, a form of TRYPANOSOMIASIS endemic in Central and South America. It is named after the Brazilian physician Carlos Chagas, who discovered the parasite. Infection by the parasite (positive serologic result only) is distinguished from the clinical manifestations that develop years later, such as destruction of PARASYMPATHETIC GANGLIA; CHAGAS CARDIOMYOPATHY; and dysfunction of the ESOPHAGUS or COLON.
The initial phase of chronic myeloid leukemia consisting of an relatively indolent period lasting from 4 to 7 years. Patients range from asymptomatic to those exhibiting ANEMIA; SPLENOMEGALY; and increased cell turnover. There are 5% or fewer blast cells in the blood and bone marrow in this phase.
A disease characterized by the chronic, progressive spread of lesions from New World cutaneous leishmaniasis caused by species of the L. braziliensis complex to the nasal, pharyngeal, and buccal mucosa some time after the appearance of the initial cutaneous lesion. Nasal obstruction and epistaxis are frequent presenting symptoms.
A subcategory of CHRONIC OBSTRUCTIVE PULMONARY DISEASE. The disease is characterized by hypersecretion of mucus accompanied by a chronic (more than 3 months in 2 consecutive years) productive cough. Infectious agents are a major cause of chronic bronchitis.