Hydatidosis: epidemiological, clinical, diagnostic and therapeutic aspects
CARLOS ARMIÑANZAS, MANUEL GUTIÉRREZ-CUADRA, MARÍA CARMEN FARIÑAS
Hydatidosis or cystic echinococcosis (CE) is a parasitic zoonosis caused by Echinococcus granulosus. Its life cycle involves dogs, sheep and sometimes other animals. CE has a worldwide distribution, with greater prevalence in temperate zones. In Spain, Castile and León, La Rioja, Navarre, Aragón, and the Mediterranean coast are the areas where it is most commonly diagnosed, although there have also been published cases in other regions, such as Cantabria. Clinical signs and symptoms of EC may be related to the mass effect of the cyst, its superinfection or anaphylactic reactions secondary to its rupture. Because of its slow growth, diagnosis is usually made in adulthood by combining clinical symptoms with imaging and serological tests. There is no universal consensus on the management of CE. Treatment is based mainly on three pillars: medical treatment (mainly albendazole), surgery, and percutaneous drainage. The choice of the most appropriate approach is based on the patient’s symptoms and the characteristics of the cysts.
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