The Expert Committee acknowledged that diseases caused by taeniid cestode cysts (cystic echinococcosis, alveolar echinococcosis and neurocysticercosis) are neglected tropical diseases with a global disease burden for which a public health need exists for effective treatment.
The Committee noted that benzimidazoles are established as the treatment of choice for cystic echinococcosis and alveolar echinococcosis; anthelminthic therapy with albendazole or praziquantel is the treatment of choice for neurocysticercosis. These recommendations are supported by evidence for benefit from non-randomized and randomized clinical trials, expert consensus and in WHO and other international treatment guidelines. The Committee also noted that albendazole, mebendazole and praziquantel have been included on the Model Lists as anthelminthic treatments for other indications for more than 30 years, and their use in clinical practice is well established.
The Committee therefore recommended expanding the listings of albendazole, mebendazole and praziquantel on the EML and EMLc to include new indications for the diseases caused by taeniid cestode cysts. Specifically, albendazole and mebendazole for treatment of cystic echinococcosis and alveolar echinococcosis, and albendazole and praziquantel for treatment of neurocysticercosis. Noting the need for specialized diagnostic, monitoring and medical care for patients with these diseases, listing was recommended on the Complementary list, in a new sub-section for cysticidal medicines.