A chronic infection of the CONJUNCTIVA and CORNEA caused by CHLAMYDIA TRACHOMATIS. Source: DECS/BIREME
Trachoma is an infectious disease caused by the bacterium, Chlamydia trachomatis. At the world level Trachoma is responsible for approximately 3% of blindness and causes 8 million people to remain with irreversible visual impairment. In the American Region, there are four countries that have trachoma foci and it is estimated that there are approximately 50 million people at the risk of having the infection. Women and children living in scattered, isolated, and poor rural areas are the population groups with the greatest risk of infection by trachoma. The measures of practicing personal hygiene and achieving access to water and sanitation are the principal interventions being used to control and eliminate the disease. The SAFE strategy is a tool based on primary health care and has been included in the Global Elimination of Trachoma (GET 2020), which has surgery, treatment with antibiotics, facial washing, and measures of environmental improvement as principal components. The State Members of PAHO are committed to eliminating new cases of blindness caused by trachoma by 2015.