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Minor side effects from treatment of filariasis expected, says W.H.O.

Lead coordinator Susitina Lene helps to administer treatment to a family in Leauvaa

Apia, SAMOA  — Minor side effects from the treatment of filariasis is expected but there is nothing to be worried about, says World Health Organization’s Dr. Rasul Baghirov.

Members of the public have recently reported having adverse reactions to the treatment, which is part of a Government campaign to to eliminate lymphatic filariasis in the country.

But Dr. Baghirov, the head of the World Health Organisation (W.H.O.) Samoa who is supervising the national campaign, told the Samoa Observer that the side effects are normal and expected. 

“The treatment is safe because we would not come with something that is unsafe and there have been multiple studies on this medicine.

“The probability of serious side effects is very minimal, extremely low, much lower than vaccinations. People may feel a little bit dizzy, some people might get a headache but that is expected and not abnormal,” he said.

The dosage varies per individual, depending on their age and their weight with some prescribed to take eight pills and others 17 tablets. Common side effects include dizziness and headache.

Dr. Baghirov has recommended that people feeling discomfort should take paracetamol or report to the health authorities if the symptoms become unbearable. 

“Stay calm there’s no need to stress out, just rest and take some paracetamol, in some cases it is being supplied. But I also need to double check that they are doing it but that is the normal procedure.

Read more at Samoa Observer