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Prevention & Control

There are no vaccines or medications available to prevent becoming infected with O. volvulus. The best prevention efforts include personal protection measures against biting insects. This includes wearing insect repellant such as N,N-Diethyl-meta-toluamide (DEET) on exposed skin, wearing long sleeves and long pants during the day when blackflies bite, and wearing permethrin- treated clothing. For a description of the CDC’s information for preventing insect bites, refer to CDC's Yellow Book. Mass distribution of ivermectin, donated by Merck & Co., Inc., to all people living in many areas where O. volvulus is found is being given to control onchocerciasis.

More on: Insect Bite Prevention

  • Page last reviewed: May 21, 2013
  • Page last updated: May 21, 2013
  • Content source:
    • Global Health - Division of Parasitic Diseases and Malaria
    • Notice: Linking to a non-federal site does not constitute an endorsement by HHS, CDC or any of its employees of the sponsors or the information and products presented on the site.