Background: As an inevitable consequence of Latin American immigration to Europe, Spain and other European countries, it is necessary to confront the approach to cases of Chagas infection/disease for which, epidemiologically, there are more questions than answers. This study has aimed to describe all the Chagas-infected population in the north metropolitan area of Barcelona (406,000 inhabitants). Patients and methods: A prospective and multicentric study was performed in 3 hospitals and 1 International Health Unit. It included all patients with Trypanosoma cruzi positive serology, regardless of the requesting reason.Results The 139 diagnosed cases represent an annual incidence of: a) 0.68/10,000 inhabitants and, b) 73.2/10,000 immigrants coming from endemic zones. Of the patients, 80 (57.6%) had alterations in some complementary tests: cardiologic 62 (44.6%), digestive 38 (27.3%) and 20 (14.4%) both. According to the Brazilian Consensus of Chagas cardiomyopathy, they were classified as: 0=84 (60.4%); a=40 (28.7%); b1=4 (2.9%), b2=10 (7.2%) and c/d=1 (0.7%). Treatment with benznidazole (5 mg/kg/24 h for 60 days) was prescribed in 116 (83.4%) patients, 89 (76.7%) of whom completed it. Secondary effects were recorded in 56 (50.9%), which made it necessary to withdraw it in 21 (19.1%). Conclusions: Fewer cases of Chagas infection/disease than expected have been diagnosed in the North Metropolitan area of Barcelona. The series contains a high number of patients and there may be an elevated number of immigrants from endemic zones who have the asymptomatic chronic stages of the infection and who were unaware of their condition. © 2012 Elsevier España, S.L. Todos los derechos reservados.
- Trypanosoma cruzi