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 Table of Contents  
ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2022  |  Volume : 6  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 489-493

Parasitic infections among pupils in three kwara senatorial districts, Nigeria


1 Department of Medical Laboratory Science, Igbinedion University, Okada, Edo State, Nigeria
2 Department of Medical Laboratory Science, Edo State University, Uzairue, Nigeria

Date of Submission02-Aug-2022
Date of Decision06-Oct-2022
Date of Acceptance01-Nov-2022
Date of Web Publication15-Dec-2022

Correspondence Address:
Pius Omoruyi Omosigho
Department of Medical Laboratory Science, Edo State University, Uzairue
Nigeria
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/bbrj.bbrj_300_22

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  Abstract 


Background: Protozoan and helminthes infections are common parasitic infections in Nigeria associated with fatal complications if not detected early or neglected. This work, therefore, investigated parasitic infections among pupils in Kwara Senatorial Districts for useful information for preventive healthcare. Methods: Stool, urine, and blood samples of 638 subjects (Kwara Central: 152; Kwara South: 263 and Kwara North: 223) were examined for parasites using concentration techniques, Giemsa staining, and microscopy. Results: The results obtained showed the overall prevalence of pupils infected with parasites in Kwara state was 17.9% (114/638). The result obtained in Kwara Central indicated that 15.1% (23/152) of the pupils were infected with parasites. In Kwara South, 2.66% (7/263) of the pupils were infected with parasites. In Kwara North, 37.7% (84/223) were infected with parasites. Distribution of parasitic infection in primary school pupils in Kwara State was: 60.5% (69) Ascaris Lumbricoides; 12.2% (14) Schistosoma mansoni; 8.8% (10) Hookworm; 9.7% (11) Entamoeba histolytica; 4.4% (5) Fassiola gigantical; 2.6% (3) Plasmodium spp., and 1.8% (2) Schistosoma haematobium. The distribution of parasitic infections among the pupils based on age included: 0% (0) (1–5 years). 55.3% (63) (6–10 years) 43.8% (50) (11–15 years), and 0.9% (1) (16–20 years). Conclusion: The parasitic infections among pupils in Kwara Senatorial Districts were lower than the prevalence earlier reported, possibly due to the intervention of donor agents and health promotion. The infection also varied across the three Kwara State Senatorial districts and age categories which might be due to the level of hygiene, degree of intervention, practices, accessibility to portable water, and health facilities.

Keywords: Kwara State Senatorial Districts Nigeria, parasitic infections, pupils


How to cite this article:
Aliyu RA, Omosigho PO, Olaniyan MF. Parasitic infections among pupils in three kwara senatorial districts, Nigeria. Biomed Biotechnol Res J 2022;6:489-93

How to cite this URL:
Aliyu RA, Omosigho PO, Olaniyan MF. Parasitic infections among pupils in three kwara senatorial districts, Nigeria. Biomed Biotechnol Res J [serial online] 2022 [cited 2023 Jan 28];6:489-93. Available from: https://www.bmbtrj.org/text.asp?2022/6/4/489/363586




  Introduction Top


Parasites are organisms that use other living things for food and shelter. Parasites could be contracted from contaminated food, water, bug bite, and sexual contact. Some parasitic diseases are more easily treated than others.[1],[2] Parasites range in size from unicellular protozoa to multicellular helminths.[3] Some of the symptoms caused by parasitic infections include itching, affecting the anus or the vagina area, abdominal pain, weight loss, increased appetite, bowel obstructions, diarrhea, and vomiting or stools, anemia, aching muscles or joints, general malaise, allergies, fatigue, and nervousness. These symptoms may also be confused with pneumonia or food poisoning.[4]

Intestinal parasites infect the gastrointestinal tract of humans and animals. They can live throughout the body, majorly the intestinal wall. Route of infection includes ingestion of undercooked meat, drinking infected water, and skin absorption. There are two main types of intestinal parasites, the helminths and the protozoa, that reside in the intestines. An intestinal parasite can damage or sicken its host via an infection which is called helminthiasis in the case of helminthes. Intestinal parasite infection could result into anemia, physical and mental disabilities, growth retardation in children, and skin irritation around the anus and vulva.[5]

The most common causes of intestinal parasites are through consumption of contaminated water, infected soil, inadequate sanitation, and improper hygiene. Specifically, lack of access to facilities for safe disposal of human waste can result in intestinal parasites and disease.[6] Parasitic contamination can also occur from eating raw vegetables and fruits, soil eating behavior, and lack of available safe water.[7] Parasites can get into the intestine by going through the mouth from uncooked or unwashed food, contaminated water or hands, or by skin contact with larva soil; they can also be transferred by the sexual act of anilingus in some cases.[8] The prevalence of intestinal parasites in Nigeria (Benin City) reported by Akinbo et al.[9] was 3.9%. Intestinal parasitic infection has been associated with malnutrition and malabsorption of micronutrients.[2]

Blood-borne parasites are found worldwide and usually spend a certain part of their life cycle in the blood of the host. Blood-borne parasites may be transmitted in two ways.[10] Parasites may be spread through infected blood transfer during needle exchange or blood transfusion or they may also be transmitted by a vector, such as an infected insect that bites a host and injects the parasites into the bloodstream. The most well-known blood-borne parasite is plasmodium, which causes malaria. Malaria can be fatal and is characterized by high fevers, chills, and flu-like symptoms.[2] Trypanosoma cruzi is a parasite that causes Chagas disease. The parasite enters the blood and stays for a prolonged period, causing severe heart and digestive problems. Babesiamicroti parasites cause the condition babesiosis. The parasites destroy the red blood cells, causing severe anemia and other blood disorders, blood clotting, organ failure, and death. Leishmania parasites cause the disease leishmaniasis. The parasites infect the skin causing ulcers and may also infect the spleen, liver, and bone marrow.[2]

The urinary tract may also be infected by parasites, especially those that have part of their life cycle in the urinary tract, such as Trichomonas vaginalis, Enterobius vermicularis, and Schistosoma heamatobium.[11] It is also important to note that parasites and parasitic ova may be seen in urine sediments as a result of fecal or vaginal contamination. Symptoms include abdominal pain, diarrhea, bloody stool, or blood in the urine.[11] Those who have been infected for a long time may experience liver damage, kidney failure, infertility, or bladder cancer ([11] Worldwide, approximately more than 2 billion people are infected with helminthes.[11] In Africa, more than 173 million people are infected with Ascaris lumbricoides, more than 162 million cases of Trichiasis, and more than 198 million cases of Hookworm. Intestinal parasitic infections were the leading cause of infection in sub-Saharan Africa, resulting in avoidable death.[2]

This work was designed to determine parasitic infections in Kwara Central, Kwara North, and Kwara South senatorial districts to provide useful information for preventive healthcare. Consequently, this work assessed the prevalence of parasites such as Entamoeba histolytica, Gardia lamblia, A. lumbricoides, Hookworm, Plasmodium species, and Schistosoma species among primary school pupils in part of Kwara State.


  Materials and Methods Top


Study area

This study was conducted in Oke-Suna LGEA primary school, Bishop Smith primary school and Baboko primary school within Kwara central senatorial district, Central LGEA primary school in Lafiagi, Central LGEA primary school in Tsaragi and LGEA primary school in Zambufu, Kwara north senatorial district and Olugbense LGEA primary school Offa, Ansarudeen primary school Offa and Apostolic primary school Offa in Kwara south senatorial district. The samples were processed in the health facilities located in the three senatorial districts of Kwara State, namely General hospital Lafiagi in Kwara north, Specialist hospital in Sobi, Ilorin in Kwara central, and Offa Specialist Hospital in Kwara south.

Study population

The study population included Primary School Pupils in Kwara Central, Kwara South, and Kwara North.

Sample size

The sample size of this study was determined.[12]

Using this formula:



n = 689.8 (Minimum sample size for this work)

Sample size = 750 but 638 subjects.

Type of sampling and reasons for selection

Randomized stratified sampling techniques to remove bias and sampling errors.

Laboratory examination

Saline and iodine methods, in addition to formal ether concentration techniques, were used for the examination of stool samples for Ova and Cysts of the Parasite. Urine and microscopy were carried out for urine parasites, while the thin and thick Geimsha staining method was used to identify hemoparasites by microscopy.

The above procedures for the detection of parasites in stool, urine, and blood were carried as described by Cheebrough.[13]

Ethical consideration

Permission/approval was obtained from the ethical and research committee of the Kwara State Ministry of Health, and proper permission was obtained from the Kwara State Ministry of Education.

Ethical issues date and number

  1. Kwara State Universal Basic Education: Ethical approval Date – January 08, 2020 Number – SUBEB/183/T
  2. Ministry of Health, Ilorin, Kwara State: Date – November 29, 2019; Number - MOH/KS/EU/777/354.


Patient's consent form

I/We...............................................................consent that our child.................. aged.....................pupil primary class........................................of............................. Primary School located in........................................... town in.................................Kwara State Senatorial District of Nigeria, having read the report of the ethical approval and intimated of the research procedure, therefore, consent that my/our child be enrolled for the research work.

Name and Signature of Parent (s)/Guardian/Date

Statistical analysis

Data collected were analyzed using a Statistical Package for SPSS 18.0 BMI SPSS (New York) determine significance at the probability of 95% confidence limit.


  Results Top


Six hundred and thirty-eight subjects were studied (Kwara Central: 152; Kwara South: 263 and Kwara North: 223) [Table 1], [Table 2], [Table 3]. The results obtained showed an overall prevalence of pupils infected with parasites in Kwara state was 17.9% [114/638; [Table 4]]. The result obtained in Kwara Central indicated that 15.1% (23/152) of the pupils were infected with parasites. In Kwara South, 2.66% (7/263) of the pupils were infected with parasites. In Kwara North, 37.7% (84/223) were infected with parasites [Table 5]. Distribution of parasitic infection in primary school pupils in Kwara State was: 60.5% (69) A. Lumbricoides; 12.2% (14) Schistosoma mansoni; 8.8% (10) Hookworm; 9.7% (11) E. histolytica; 4.4% (5) Fassiola gigantical; 2. 6% (3) Plasmodium spp., and 1.8% (2) Schistosoma haematobium [Table 6]. The distribution of parasitic infections among the pupils based on age included: 0% (0) (1–5 years). 55.3% (63) (6–10 years) 43.8% (50) (11–15 years) and 0.9% (1) (16–20 years) [Table 7].
Table 1: Demographic characteristics of participants

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Table 2: Gender distribution of participants

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Table 3: Senatorial distribution of participants

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Table 4: Parasitic infection distribution among participants

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Table 5: Parasitic infection distribution among pupils based on senatorial districts

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Table 6: Distribution of parasite species association with infection through primary school pupils in Kwara State

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Table 7: Age distribution of parasitic infections among primary school pupils in Kwara State

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  Discussion Top


Six hundred and thirty-eight subjects were studied (Kwara Central: 152; Kwara South: 263 and Kwara North: 223). The results obtained showed the overall prevalence of pupils infected with parasites in Kwara state was 17.9% (114/638). The result obtained in Kwara Central indicated that 15.1% (23/152) of the pupils were infected with parasites. In Kwara South, 2.66% (7/263) of the pupils were infected with parasites. In Kwara North, 37.7% (84/223) were infected with parasites. Distribution of parasitic infection in primary school pupils in Kwara State was: 60.5% (69) A. Lumbricoides; 12.2% (14) S. mansoni; 8.8% (10) Hookworm; 9.7% (11) E. histolytica; 4.4% (5) F. gigantical; 2. 6% (3) Plasmodium spp. and 1.8% (2) S. haematobium. The distribution of parasitic infections among the pupils based on age included: 0% (0) (1–5 years). 55.3% (63) (6–10 years) 43.8% (50) (11–15 years) and 0.9% (1) (16–20 years).

The overall prevalence of pupils infected with parasites in Kwara state in this study was 17.9% (114/638). This is lower than the prevalence of parasitic infection previously reported by other authors in Kwara State as follows: Babamale et al.[14] reported that 81.3% were infected with at least one parasite species in their report of the high prevalence of Plasmodium falciparum and soil-transmitted helminth co-infections in a periurban community in Kwara State, Nigeria. Ibrahim et al.[15] that 23.32% of primary school pupils were found to harbor different species of parasites in their work on the prevalence and Associated Risk Factors of Gastro – Intestinal Parasites among Primary School Pupils in Ilorin East Local Government Area, Kwara State, Nigeria. Babatunde et al.[16] reported that the overall prevalence of soil-transmitted helminths in the four communities was 41.9% in their work on soil-transmitted helminth infections among school children in rural communities of Moro Local Government Area, Kwara State, Nigeria. Edungbola[17] reported 37.9% prevalence of dracontiasis among 190 children under 10 years of age in Babana district, Kwara State, Nigeria. Adedeji et al.[18] found an overall prevalence of schistosomiasis infection as 35%, and Patigi District recorded the highest prevalence of 66.7% in their work on prevalence and risk factors of schistosomiasis infection among primary school pupils in Patigi Local Government Area, Kwara State. Gyang et al.[19] reported an overall prevalence of 86.2% among school-aged children in an archetypal African urban slum in Nigeria.

The lower prevalence in this work could be due to several interventions aimed at reducing the tide of parasitic infection such as deworming, distribution of mosquito nets, provision of potable water, and health promotions. Mehraj et al.[20] described poverty, illiteracy, poor hygiene, lack of access to potable water, and hot and humid tropical climate are the factors associated with intestinal parasitic infections. They, therefore, suggested effective poverty reduction programs and promotion of deworming could reduce intestinal parasite carriage and the need for mass-scale campaigns to create awareness about health and hygiene. Tigabu et al.,[21] in their report, also recommended the provision of clean potable water and minimizing the contamination of vegetables.

The result obtained in Kwara Central indicated that 15.1% (23/152) of the pupils were infected with parasites. In Kwara South, 2.66% (7/263) of the pupils were infected with parasites and in Kwara North, 37.7% (84/223) were infected with parasites. This frequency difference might be due to environmental factors, level of health hygiene, accessibility to portable water, farming activities, accessibility to health facilities, and pupils physical activities.

Gyang et al.[19] parasitic infections are very severe among school-aged children in the urban slums and recommended regular mass deworming programs, health education, and the provision of safe drinking water to combat parasitic infections (intestinal) among the school-aged children.

Gboeloh et al.[22] reported a high prevalence rate of urinary tract parasitic infections among Students of Rivers State College of Health Science and Technology, Port Harcourt, Rivers State and also recommended. Health education, regular screening, and treatment of infected persons to reduce the trend.

All these factors might have accounted for the differences in prevalence, especially across Kwara State Senatorial Districts.

Several donor agents have intervened to stem the tide of parasitic infection; according to the WHO[23] that local support is being made possible by the continued global support of the Arab Bank for Economic Development in Africa, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Christoffel-blindenmission, Department for International Development United Kingdom, Glaxosmith Kline, Johnson and Johnson, Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development, Mectizan Donation Program, Merc Sharp and Dohme Chibret, Sightsavers, The END Fund, Merck Group, United States Agency for International Development and The World Bank.

The lower prevalence rate in this work might be due to several interventions of donor agents.[23],[24],[25]

The distribution of parasitic infection in primary school pupils in Kwara State was: 60.5% (69) A. Lumbricoides; 12.2% (14) S. mansoni; 8.8% (10) Hookworm; 9.7% (11) E. histolytica; 4.4% (5) F. gigantical; 2. 6% (3) Plasmodium spp., and 1.8% (2) S. haematobium is not consistent with the distribution of parasitic infection obtained in Kwara State – North Central, Nigeria because A. lumbricoides was most prevalent helminth in the South-Western (21%) and South-Southern (13%) parts of Nigeria. Hookworm was the most prevalent helminth infection in the South-Eastern (19%), while multiple infections were highly prevalent in Northern Nigeria (25% in North-Central and 19% in the Northeast and Northwest, respectively) according to the report of Oluwatobiloba et al.[26] Differences in the level of hygiene, poverty, accessibility to portable water, level of intervention, and hospital facilities, as explained above, might be responsible.

In this work, parasitic infection is more prevalent in pupils aged 6 and 15 years. This is consistent with the fact that age category is a significant factor for intestinal parasitic infections, which could be attributed to frequent contact among each other, playing with soil and water bodies, overcrowding in the classroom or day-care centers, poor personal hygiene, immunocompromised condition, and habit of sharing of materials which facilitates the spread of the parasites according to Tigabu et al.[20] Parasitic infection studies are, therefore, very significant among pupils aged 6 and 15 years, where the parasitic infection is more prevalent in this study for preventive health-care delivery. This is because the parasitic infection has been associated with micronutrient deficiency,[27] chloroquine resistance in plasmodium infection,[28] hematological and biochemical effect,[29],[30] infectious diarrhea,[31] molecular docking of filarial β-tubulin protein models with antifilarial phytochemicals,[32] and plant with potential antimalarial toxicity.[33]


  Conclusion Top


The parasitic infections among pupils in Kwara Senatorial Districts were lower than the prevalence earlier reported, possibly due to the intervention of donor agents and health promotion. The infection also varied across the three Kwara State Senatorial districts and age categories which might be due to the level of hygiene, degree of intervention, practices, accessibility to portable water, and health facilities.

Limitation of the study

Consent was obtained from the parents of the pupils as they were not too mature to take a decision on their enrolment for the work.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.



 
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    Tables

  [Table 1], [Table 2], [Table 3], [Table 4], [Table 5], [Table 6], [Table 7]



 

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