The Ghana Health Service (GHS) has reported that the Upper East Region of Ghana has the highest number of cases of elephantiasis, also known as lymphatic filariasis, in the country.
Approximately 2,373 confirmed cases of elephantiasis, which make up about a third of all cases in the country, have been recorded in the region.
The Desk Officer for the Ghana Health Service’s Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs) programme, Bright Alomatu, speaking in an interview, says that although elephantiasis is endemic throughout all 15 municipalities and districts in the Upper East Region, efforts have been made to prevent its further spread.
“In all, we have registered close to 6,000 cases across the whole country, the Upper East Region has 2,373, those are those we found. There could even be more out there. Again, it’s not only the Upper East Region that has the condition. Maybe the high numbers may be due to the pressures of many dams, and irrigation projects because the disease is spread by the very anopheles mosquito that transmits malaria.”
“We have done more work in the Upper East Region than all the regions. It’s also possible that if we do a thorough search in other regions, their number could increase,” the Desk Officer for the Ghana Health Service’s NTDs programme said.