Biomédica: revista del Instituto Nacional de Salud (May 2021)

Characterization of an outbreak of malaria in a non-endemic zone on the coastal region of Ecuador

  • Diego Omar Morales,
  • Paul Andrés Quinatoa,
  • Jaen Carlos Cagua

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 41, no. Supl. 1
pp. 100 – 112


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Introduction: Malaria is a vector-borne disease widely distributed in the Amazon region and the coastal area of northern Ecuador. Its epidemiology involves related factors such as human settlements, vector reproduction sites, mobility, productive activity, and the response capacity of health systems, among others. Objective: To describe malaria transmission by Plasmodium vivax in a non-endemic area of Ecuador by analyzing the epidemiological and entomological factors involved. Materials and methods: We conducted the epidemiological study of the cases reported in the Salinas canton and the characterization of vector breeding sites through captures of larvae and adult mosquitoes by human capture of resting mosquitoes. Results: We detected 21 cases of malaria with local transmission related to the presence of initial cases in Venezuelan migrant patients and identified Anopheles albimanus as the predominant vector in natural breeding sites such as estuaries, wells, and water channels. Conclusions: We detected an outbreak of malaria triggered by imported cases from Venezuela. Climatic, social, environmental, and ecological conditions have favored the development of the vector maintaining the transmission cycle. Strategies to control imported malaria should be multiple including early case detection and control of productive breeding sites to avoid local transmission.