Lymphatic filariasis, commonly known as elephantiasis, is a painful and profoundly disfiguring disease. In endemic countries, lymphatic filariasis has a major social and economic impact.The disease is caused by three species of thread-like nematode worms, known as filariae ? Wuchereria bancrofti, Brugia malayi and Brugia timori
Globally, 1103 million people live in the countries where preventive treatment for lymphatic filariasis is required. WHO's African and South-East Asia regions harbour 94% of the population living in endemic areas, and 98% of the infected population. 410 million (37%) live in the African Region (35 countries). The Region of the Americas, Eastern Mediterranean Region and Western Pacific Region (with 4, 3 and 22 endemic countries, respectively) together account for 6% of global distribution.