Quick Facts

  • Over 6 million people worldwide, from Japan to London and from California to Argentina, have Chagas disease
  • There are over 300,000 cases of Chagas disease in the United States, but <1% know they have it. This includes up to 60,000 people who have already suffered irreversible heart damage.
  • Trypanosoma cruzi, the parasite that causes Chagas disease, can exist quietly in your body for decades before making you feel sick
  • Chagas disease produces over $658 million in healthcare costs annually worldwide, with nearly $120 million in the U.S. alone (Lee et al. 2013)
  • Chagas disease was discovered in 1909 by Brazilian researcher Carlos Chagas
  • The first diagnosis of Chagas disease in the United States occurred in Texas in 1955
  • Chagas disease was found in human remains in Texas dating from the thirteenth century
  • Chagas disease has been found in 9,000 year-old mummified remains in Chile
  • Chagas disease is also found in dogs, cats, raccoons, opossums, armadillos, and other mammals