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Preliminary   > Science and Technology   >   Miscellaneous   >   Diseases

Why in news?

  • Recently, the Union Health Minister inaugurated the second phase of the Annual Nationwide Mass Drug Administration (MDA) initiative for Lymphatic Filariasis.
  • India aims to eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis by 2027, three years ahead of the global target, through a mission-driven strategy.

About Filariasis:

  • Filariasis is a parasitic infection caused by microscopic, thread-like worms known as filariae.
  • It is spread by the bite of infected mosquitoes, and it affects millions of people in tropical and subtropical regions worldwide.
  • India aims to eliminate filariasis by 2027, three years ahead of the global target.

Causes and Transmission:

  • Lymphatic filariasis is caused by infection with parasites classified as nematodes (roundworms) of the family Filariodidea.
  • There are 3 types of these thread-like filarial worms:
    • Wuchereria bancrofti, which is responsible for 90% of the cases,
    • Brugia malayi, which causes most of the remainder of the cases,
    • Brugia timori, which also causes the disease.


  • Lymphatic filariasis infection involves asymptomatic, acute, and chronic conditions.
  • In chronic conditions, it leads to lymphoedema (tissue swelling) or elephantiasis (skin/tissue thickening) of limbs and hydrocele (scrotal swelling).


  • The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends three drug treatments to accelerate the global elimination of lymphatic filariasis.
  • The treatment, known as IDA, involves a combination of ivermectin, diethylcarbamazine citrate and albendazole.
  • The plan is to administer these drugs for two consecutive years.
  • The life of the adult worm is hardly four years, so it would die a natural death without causing any harm to the person.


Consider the following statements regarding ‘Filariasis’ disease:

1. It is caused by bacteria

2. It is spread by the bite of infected mosquitoes

3. The disease had been eliminated from India in 2022

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

(a) 1 and 3 only

(b) 2 only

(c) 1 and 2 only

(d) 1,2 and 3