Mass drug administration programs against lymphatic filariasis can result in a number of adverse effects associated with the death of the filaria and the host response.

Mechanism: allergic/immune response to dead filaria; local tissue reaction to dead filaria


Adverse events include:

(1) transient lymphedema

(2) scrotal swelling (in males)

(3) skin nodules or subcutaneous swellings

(4) lymphadenitis (axilla, groin)

(5) systemic reaction (fever, headache, myalgia)


Differential diagnosis:

(1) toxic effects of medications

(2) comorbid condition

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