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How do medications treat lymphatic filariasis?

Annual doses of the drug diethylcarbamazine (DEC) kills most, but not all, of the microscopic worms in the blood. A more effective approach is to combine two drugs, albendazole and DEC or albendazole and a drug called ivermectin. Given just once a year, the two-drug combination is 99 percent effective in removing worms from the blood. The treatment is most effective for people who are infected with the parasite but have no symptoms. People with lymphedema are helped by the drug but it does not relieve their symptoms.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.