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A Survey of Intestinal Parasites Including Associated Risk Factors in Humans in Panama

AutorSandoval, Nidia R.; Ríos, Nivia; Mena, Alberto; Fernández, Rigoberto; Perea, Milixa; Manzano Román, Raúl ; Ruiz Santa Quiteria, José A.; Hernández Gonzalez, Ana; Siles Lucas, Mar
Palabras claveRepublic of Panama
Chiriqui Province
Primary schoolchildren
Trichuris Trichiura
Preschool children
Nutritional status
School children
Fecha de publicación2015
CitaciónActa Tropica 147(1): 54-63 (2015)
ResumenIntestinal parasitic infections are among the most common infections worldwide, leading to illness with serious and long lasting implications in children and immunocompromised people. Transmission of intestinal parasites is more frequent in tropical and sub-tropical areas where sanitation is poor and socioeconomic conditions are deficient. Panama is a country where climate and social conditions could be reflected in a high number of people infected with intestinal parasites. The presence, prevalence, and distribution of intestinal parasites in this country have been approached to date only in very restricted areas and population groups, but the impact of intestinal parasite infections at the national level is unknown. Methodology/Principal Findings. We conducted a cross-sectional survey between 2008 and 2010 to determine the prevalence of intestinal parasites across Panama. Overall, 14 municipalities in seven provinces of Panama were surveyed. The presence of eggs, cysts, and larvae was assessed by microscopy in 1,123 human fecal samples using a concentration technique. A questionnaire to identify risk factors associated with the frequency of intestinal parasites in the study population was also prepared and performed. Overall, 47.4% of human samples presented parasites. Variables including community type, age group, occupation, co-presence of commensals and socioeconomic factors (use of shoes and type of sanitation) were significantly associated with intestinal parasites (p<0.05). Conclusions/Significance The preliminary data obtained in the current study, showing a high prevalence of fecaloral transmitted parasites in Panama, place intestinal parasitism as a major health problem in this country. Specific interventions should be planned for the indigenous population, the group most afflicted by intestinal parasites.
Descripción46 páginas, 3 figuras, 5 tablas. -- The definitive version is available at: http://www.elsevier.com. -- Technical assistance, María González (IRNASA; CSIC)
Versión del editorhttp://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.actatropica.2015.03.024
Aparece en las colecciones: (IRNASA) Artículos
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