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WHO To Convene Meeting On Yaws Eradication Efforts Based On Study Of Oral Treatment

“Findings that a one-time oral treatment to cure yaws, a neglected tropical disease, is as effective as the currently recommended penicillin injection have prompted the World Health Organization (WHO) to convene a meeting on how the disease may be wiped out,” IRIN reports. “‘We may be closer now than we have been in decades,’ Kingsley Asiedu, a yaws expert with WHO’s Department of Neglected Tropical Disease Control, told IRIN, calling the study on the bacterial skin disease, which leads to chronic disfiguration and disability in 10 percent of untreated cases, the most significant in half a century,” the news service writes.

IRIN provides a brief history of yaws control efforts and writes, “The meeting of yaws experts convened by WHO in Geneva from 5-7 March will ‘fully define how we are going to embark [on a new yaws treatment regimen] using azithromycin,’ said Asiedu.” The news service adds, “More studies are needed to ensure resistance to azithromycin treatment does not develop, said David Mabey from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine” (1/11).