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Intestinal helminth infections among children of district Shopian of Kashmir Valley, India

Wani, Showkat Ahmad, Amin, Ayshia
Journal of parasitic diseases 2016 v.40 no.4 pp. 1422-1425
Ascaris lumbricoides, Enterobius vermicularis, Taenia saginata, Trichuris trichiura, children, control methods, defecation, education, feces, helminthiasis, helminths, hygiene, questionnaires, zinc sulfate, India
Intestinal helminth infections are amongst the most common infections worldwide. Studies in other districts of Kashmir Valley revealed a high prevalence of intestinal helminth infections among the children. The objectives of the current study were to determine the prevalence of intestinal helminth infections among children of Shopian district and to identify associated socio-demographic and environmental actors, behavioral habits and also related complaints. Stool samples were collected from 352 children and a questionnaire was filled for each case. The samples were processed using both simple smear and zinc sulphate concentration methods, and then microscopically examined for intestinal helminths. Of the 352 children surveyed, 75.28 % had 1, or more, helminth parasites. Prevalence of Ascaris lumbricoides was highest (71.8 %), followed by Trichuris trichiura (26.4 %), Enterobius vermicularis (13.9 %) and Taenia saginata (5.3 %). Conditions most frequently associated with infection included the age group, water source, boiled or unboiled water, defecation site, personal hygiene, and the extent of maternal education. The study shows a relatively high prevalence of intestinal helminths and suggests an imperative for the implementation of control measures.