Bed bug bites may be annoying and unpleasant, but it turns out that these pests can leave behind another “gift” that’s more serious. Our Hilton Head bed bug specialists share some information you need to know about bed bugs and Chagas disease.
What Is Chagas Disease?
You may not have heard of Chagas disease, but it affects six to eight million people worldwide and kills approximately 50,000 per year. Chagas disease is found primarily in South America, but the problem has been growing in the United States. Estimates from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say that U.S. cases could be as high as 300,000.
Chagas disease is caused by parasites that hide in the heart and digestive tissue. Patients are often asymptomatic during the early stages of the disease, making it difficult to diagnose and allowing time for cardiac, digestive and neurological disorders to develop.
Bed Bugs as Disease Carriers
Triatomines, or “kissing bugs,” have been the primary transmitters of Chagas disease. These parasites are passed not through bites but by deposits of feces on the skin. Bed bugs are “cousins” of triatomines, and in a study conducted at the Zoonotic Disease Research Center in Arequipa, Peru, scientists demonstrated that bed bugs can indeed acquire and transmit Chagas disease.
Get Effective Pest Control from Hilton Head Bed Bug Specialists
Bed bugs are opportunistic pests who enter sight unseen and make themselves at home. Our Hilton Head bed bug specialists are the only local resource using in-home heat treatment instead of dangerous and ineffective chemicals. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation and 58-point inspection.