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Year : 2016  |  Volume : 19  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 131-137

Prevalence and infection intensity of geohelminthiases among school children as an environmental health indicator to guide preventive activities in Nandi County, Kenya

Department of Medical Microbiology and Parasitology, College of Health Sciences, Moi University, Eldoret, Kenya

Correspondence Address:
Chrispinus Siteti Mulambalah
Department of Medical Microbiology and Parasitology, College of Health Sciences, Moi University, P. O. Box: 4606-30100, Eldoret
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DOI: 10.4103/1119-0388.185439

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Background: Intestinal helminth infections acquired from contaminated environment cause morbidity and mortality worldwide. These infections have persisted in some communities prompting the need to evaluate epidemiological determinants and plan for intervention programs. Design and Setting: A 6 months cross-sectional school-based study was undertaken in Nandi County, Kenya to assess the prevalence and intensity of intestinal geohelminthiases in school children. Materials and Methods: Fecal samples were analyzed by modified formal-ether concentration technique. Whole sediment formed after centrifugation was transferred onto a slide and examined microscopically. All helminth ova and larvae were isolated and identified based on morphological features and enumerated. Chi-square statistic test was used to analyze and make comparisons of variables. Results: Of a total of 2000 stool samples collected, 73.9% (n = 1478) were analyzed while 26.1% (n = 524) were discarded due to contamination. Ascariasis was most prevalent accounting for 42-74% compared to trichuriasis 16-38% and hookworm disease 6-41%. There was no significance difference in prevalence among study sites and between sexes (P > 0.05). However, a significant difference in age group-specific prevalence (P < 0.05) was established. Analysis of sex-specific prevalence indicated that males had a higher prevalence than females (P < 0.05). Infection intensities were light in all sites and sexes. Conclusions: Intestinal geohelminthiases prevalence was high and was evidence of a major public health problem. The findings present a basis and good reference demonstrating the distribution pattern of geohelminths in school children. Relevant and appropriate treatment should be undertaken for those infected and plans for community-wide preventive measures should be initiated.

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