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Update: Dracunculiasis Eradication -- Nigeria, 1992

The reported incidence of dracunculiasis (i.e., Guinea worm disease) in Nigeria declined substantially during 1992 -- the fourth consecutive year in which reports of known cases declined. This report summarizes dracunculiasis surveillance data for Nigeria and describes progress toward eradication of this disease.

During the 1991-1992 epidemiologic year (i.e., July 1991-June 1992), 201,453 cases of dracunculiasis were reported in 4576 villages where the disease is endemic, a 25% reduction from the number of cases reported during 1990-1991 (Figure 1). Since 1988-1989, the number of reported cases has decreased 68.5%, and the number of villages where the disease is endemic has decreased 22.9% (from 640,008 cases in 5932 villages) (1).

Nigeria's Guinea Worm Eradication Program (NIGEP) intensified all major control measures during 1992, including extending health education and community mobilization to all villages with endemic dracunculiasis, promoting education about the disease in schools in areas with endemic dracunculiasis, distributing cloth filters to more than 70% of the villages, and targeting at least 30% of the affected villages for provision of safe drinking water. In addition, during 1992, Nigeria completed its transition from annual retrospective surveys to monthly reporting of cases by trained village-based health workers in each of the villages with endemic dracunculiasis. During 1993, NIGEP will introduce use of temephos (Abate (registered) *) to treat unsafe sources of drinking water in selected villages in which the disease is endemic.

Reported by: Federal Ministry of Health and Social Svcs, Nigeria. Global 2000, Inc, The Carter Center, Atlanta. WHO Collaborating Center for Research, Training, and Eradication of Dracunculiasis, Div of Parasitic Diseases, National Center for Infectious Diseases, CDC.

Editorial Note

Editorial Note: The number of dracunculiasis cases reported in Nigeria (1992 population: approximately 90 million) in 1992 is similar to that reported in Ghana (1992 population: approximately 15 million) in 1989. The annual rate of decline in reported cases has decreased from 31% from 1989-1990 to 1990-1991, to 25% from 1990- 1991 to 1991-1992. Although Nigeria is expected to complete its eradication of dracunculiasis by the end of 1995, control measures must be intensified during 1993- 1995 to reach this goal.


  1. CDC. Update: dracunculiasis eradication -- Ghana and Nigeria, 1991. MMWR 1992;41:397-9.

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