The World Health Organization (WHO) released the latest data concerning the spread of Chagas disease in Latin America on Tuesday.
Experts looked at data concerning people living with Chagas disease, also known as American trypanosomiasis, which is caused by Trypanosoma cruzi. The data on various countries in Latin America in 2010 includes blood transfusion transmissions and new cases caused by maternal-to-child contact.
Argentina, Brazil, and Mexico have the most people living with Chagas disease. Bolivia and Columbia follow closely behind in Chagas case numbers.
Argentina and Brazil also lead the list in Chagasic cardiomyopathy cases, followed by Colombia, Boliva and Mexico.
The three wealthiest Latin American economies have 62 percent of Chagas cases in the area and 58 percent of Chagasic cardiomyopathy cases.
Mexico has the most maternal-to-child transmitted congenital Chagas cases. Argentina follows close behind.
The WHO considers the three areas with the highest percentage of Chagas (Bolivia, Argentina, and Paraguay) to be part of Gran Chaco. In the Americas, Gran Chaco is now synonymous with the center of Chagas disease.
Less than 1 percent of the people with Chagas disease living in Latin America have access to treatments for their infections. This percentage includes those living in the wealthier economies.