Objectives: To determine the efficacy of single-dose albendazole (400 mg) for soil-transmitted helminth infections (STH) in schoolchildren living in one community of the city of Iquitos, Perú.
Materials and methods: Within the context of a randomized controlled trial performed in a peri-urban community of limited resources located in Iquitos in the Peruvian Amazon, stool specimens were collected from Grade 5 schoolchildren in 18 schools and analysed for STH prevalence and intensity. A total of 1,193 school-age children were then dewormed with single-dose albendazole (400 mg). Of the 909 children who were found positive with at least one STH infection, a random sample of 385 was followed two weeks later when a second stool specimen was collected and analyzed.
Results: The efficacy of albendazole was satisfactory: for Ascaris lumbricoides , with an egg reduction rate (ERR) of 99.8%; (95% CI: 99.3-100); for hookworm, with an ERR of 93.6 %; (95% CI: 88.2-96.6) and, for Trichuris trichiura, with an ERR of 72.7 %; (95% CI: 58.5-79.1).
Conclusions: These results are consistent with previous data published on the efficacy of albendazole and the directives of the World Health Organization. Future research should focus on improving the efficacy of the treatment strategies for Trichuris trichiura infection.