Detection of areas vulnerable to scorpionism and its association with environmental factors in São Paulo, Brazil

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Accidents caused by scorpions are considered a neglected condition and represent a major health problem in most tropical countries, especially for children and elderly people. In Brazil, scorpionism is recurrent in the southeast region, mainly in the state of São Paulo, due to the progressive increase in scorpions found in urban habitats. Thus, our study aimed to provide better insights into the geographic and epidemiological characteristics of scorpion envenomation in São Paulo state and identify the environmental factors that are associated with these accidents. This is an ecological and retrospective study with secondary data on scorpion accidents in the state of São Paulo from 2008 to 2018 obtained from the Notifiable Disease Information System. The SatScan software was used to identify the higher- and lower-risk spatiotemporal clusters. A total of 145,464 scorpion sting cases were recorded in the state of São Paulo, between 2008 and 2018; there was a four-fold increase in the incidence rate. Accidents occurred more frequently in the spring season, wherein higher-risk clusters were in the north and northwest regions of the state. High temperatures, low precipitation, and poor natural vegetation are associated with higher risk areas. Our study mapped vulnerable areas for scorpion accidents that can aid in the design of efficient public health policies, which should be intensified during the spring season.
Lacerda AB, Lorenz C, Azevedo TS, Candido DM, Fan HW, Eloy LJ, et al. Detection of areas vulnerable to scorpionism and its association with environmental factors in São Paulo, Brazil. Acta Trop. 2022 June;230:106390. doi:10.1016/j.actatropica.2022.106390.
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