In this section you will find answers to some common questions about Chagas disease. If your question is not included here, you can send it to us using the contact form and our experts will send you an answer.
You cannot be infected by simple skin contact. Infection can only occur when the infected blood penetrates through a break in the skin or another route of entry. Infection can be the result of contact with an infected needle. Such an accident could, for example, occur in an operating room if a health professional is accidentally pricked with a needle that has been in contact with the blood of a person with Chagas. The likelihood of infection varies depending on the stage of the affected person's disease. In an adult with disease in the chronic stage, there are very few parasites in blood that can cause disease so the probability of transmission in this way during this phase is minimal. If the blood comes from a baby with Chagas, the possibility of infection is greater because the baby has acute Chagas disease and his or her blood will contain many circulating parasites. It is therefore advisable to use protection when cutting the umbilical cord during a delivery to prevent contact with splashes of blood on or near the eyes or mouth, since in both cases there is a risk of transmission.
No, not all kissing bugs transmit Chagas. There are some species that transmit the Chagas parasite and others that do not. Furthermore, even among the species that can transmit the parasite not all bugs are infected. Consequently some people who have been bitten or had contact with a kissing bug do not have Chagas disease. In many cases the bugs are born healthy and become infected when they bite a person infected with the parasite that causes Chagas disease.
Se puede contraer Chagas a través de alimentos que han sido contaminados por vinchucas infectadas. En América Latina el consumo de algunas bebidas como el jugo de Açaí, jugos de algunas palmeras como la leche de majo o jugo de guayaba pueden ser motivo de transmisión, siempre y cuando el alimento haya tenido contacto con las heces de la vinchuca infectada.
La enfermedad de Chagas no se trasmite sexualmente ni por contacto con la piel.