Author(s): Hopkins DR, Flrez D
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Abstract Three treponemal infections of man have coexisted in Colombia, South America for centuries. In former years, Colombia and Mexico were the world's most highly endemic countries for pinta. Within Colombia, highest rates of infection with pinta occurred among the mestizo and Indian populations in the Andean and Caribbean departments of Huila, Tolima, Antiochia, Magdalena and Cesar. Yaws occurred primarily in rural areas along the Pacific coast among descendants of African slaves. Infectious syphilis is most often reported from the three largest urban areas, and from three other densely populated departments in the Andean region. During the 21-year period from 1954 to 1974, almost four times as many cases of pinta as yaws were reported. The incidence rates of yaws and pinta have declined almost in parallel in Colombia, even though there has been a national campaign against yaws, but not against pinta. The incidence of primary and secondary syphilis increased only slightly during the same period. The total burden of reported treponematoses (excluding tertiary and congenital syphilis) declinded by over 40 per cent, while the ratios of reported yaws, pinta and infectious syphilis rose from 1:3:4 in 1954 to 1:7:975 in 1974.
This article was published in Int J Epidemiol
and referenced in Journal of Gerontology & Geriatric Research