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A Cross-Sectional Study of Lyme Disease, Tularaemia and Leptospirosis in Eastern Slovakia

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Pilot Cross-Sectional Study of Three Zoonoses (Lyme Disease, Tularaemia, Leptospirosis) among Healthy Blood Donors in Eastern Slovakia.
 
Abstract
 
OBJECTIVE:
The aim of the study was to determine the seroprevalence of three zoonotic infections among healthy blood donors/volunteers in Eastern Slovakia.
 
METHODS:
Sera from 124 blood donors were investigated for the presence of antibodies against Borrelia burgdorferi, Francisella tularensis and Leptospira pomona. The participants also completed the questionnaire about demographic, exposure and epidemiological characteristics. Two serological methods were used for the diagnosis: the enzyme linked protein A/G assay (ELPAGA) and the Western blot (WB). First, sera were screened by ELPAGA (except for leptospirosis).
 
RESULTS:
The observed seroprevalence was 15% for Lyme borreliosis (LB) and 4% for tularaemia (TUL). The results were confirmed by WB. Positive IgG antibodies (WB method) were detected only in 1.6% of examined for LB and 0.8% for TUL. Our results did not identify any antibodies against Leptospira pomona agent in the examined healthy blood donors group.
 
CONCLUSIONS:
ELPAGA seroprevalence for TUL was significantly higher in blood donors working in the agricultural area in the direct contact with hay, straw, manure, and agricultural land. Our outputs determine tick bite as a significant risk factor for LB. The study confirms the explosion of tick-borne diseases in the healthy population of people. The exposure risk for leptospirosis seems to be minimal.
 
Source: By Zákutná ?, Dorko E, Rimárová K, Kizeková M. Pilot Cross-Sectional Study of Three Zoonoses (Lyme Disease, Tularaemia, Leptospirosis) among Healthy Blood Donors in Eastern Slovakia. Cent Eur J Public Health. 2015 Jun;23(2):100-6.

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