Stigma reduction and improved knowledge and attitudes towards filariasis using a comic book for children

J Egypt Soc Parasitol. 2003 Apr;33(1):55-65.


WHO has initiated a global program for lymphatic filariasis (LF) elimination by year 2020. A comic book was designed to improve knowledge and attitudes of Egyptian school children, which included messages on the acceptability of Mass Drug Administration (MDA) and stigma reduction. Comic book administration significantly reduced the fear of the studied children from LF as a killer disease. It helped in positively changing the attitudes of the children towards Elephantiasis patients (p-value <.001). The comic book also reduced the number of children who had earlier stated that they would avoid someone with LF. Knowledge about the ability of treating and preventing LF was also significantly increased among the children after reading the comic book. Moreover, comic book reading helped in raising the awareness towards MDA as the method of choice in preventing LF. Most of the children liked the comic book and its contents. Importantly, 96.2% found this book easy to understand. Many of relatives and friends read the comic book within 2 weeks after distribution. A well-accepted comic book for children is a proven way to reduce stigma and increase knowledge about disease prevention and treatment.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study

MeSH terms

  • Attitude*
  • Books, Illustrated*
  • Child
  • Egypt
  • Female
  • Filariasis / psychology*
  • Health Education*
  • Humans
  • Male