• Human African trypanosomiasis amongst urban residents in Kinshasa: a case-control study.

      Robays, J; Ebeja, A; Lutumba, P; Miaka mia Bilenge, C; Kande Betu Ku Mesu, V; De Deken, R; Makabuza, J; Deguerry, M; Van der Stuyft, P; Boelaert, M; et al. (2004-08)
      BACKGROUND: Increasing numbers of human African trypanosomiasis (HAT) cases have been reported in urban residents of Kinshasa, Democratic Republic Congo since 1996. We set up a case-control study to identify risk factors for the disease. METHODS: All residents of the urban part of Kinshasa with parasitologically confirmed HAT and presenting for treatment to the city's specialized HAT clinics between 1 August, 2002 and 28 February, 2003 were included as cases. We defined the urban part as the area with contiguous habitation and a population density >5000 inhabitants per square kilometre. A digital map of the area was drawn based on a satellite image. For each case, two serologically negative controls were selected, matched on age, sex and neighbourhood. Logistic regression models were fitted to control for confounding. RESULTS: The following risk factors were independently associated with HAT: travel, commerce and cultivating fields in Bandundu, and commerce and cultivating fields in the rural part of Kinshasa. No association with activities in the city itself was found. DISCUSSION: In 2002, the emergence of HAT in urban residents of Kinshasa appears mainly linked to disease transmission in Bandundu and rural Kinshasa. We recommend to intensify control of these foci, to target HAT screening in urban residents to people with contact with these foci, to increase awareness of HAT amongst health workers in the urban health structures and to strengthen disease surveillance.
    • Sleeping sickness in the region of the town of Kinshasa: a retrospective analysis during the surveillance period 1996-2000.

      Ebeja, A; Lutumba, P; Molisho, D; Kegels, G; Miaka mia Bilenge, C; Boelaert, M; Médecins sans Frontières, Kinshasa, République Démocratique du Congo. kadima_ebeja@hotmail.com (Wiley-Blackwell, 2003-10)
      In the Democratic Republic of Congo, the re-emergence of sleeping sickness is no longer limited to rural areas. Over the course of the past decade, more and more cases have been reported from urban centres such as Kinshasa, Mbuji-mayi, Matadi and Boma. This paper presents a retrospective analysis on the region of Kinshasa over the period 1996-2000, using epidemiological surveillance, individual case files and available entomological data. There are 22 health districts in total; they were classified as urban when the population exceeded 5000 per square kilometre. The Human African Trypanosomiasis (HAT) control programme reported 2451 parasitologically confirmed new cases between 1996 and 2000, in the entire region of Kinshasa. Affected people (66%) were aged 15-49 years. Cases occurred in every health district, and 956 (39%) occurred in urban residents. Glossina captures in 1999 established the presence of Trypanosoma spp. Local HAT transmission is plausible but not proven. The high number of urban cases necessitates development of control strategies adapted to cities.