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ISSN: 1734-3402
Family Medicine & Primary Care Review
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vol. 18
Original paper

Intestinal parasitic infestations in children living in Warsaw

Krzysztof Korzeniewski

Zakład Epidemiologii i Medycyny Tropikalnej w Gdyni Wojskowego Instytutu Medycznego
Family Medicine & Primary Care Review 2016; 18, 2: 132–137
Online publish date: 2016/06/27
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Background. Intestinal parasitic infestations pose one of the biggest health problems of the contemporary world.

Objectives. The aim of this article was to present the prevalence of intestinal parasites among children living in a large urban agglomeration.

Material and methods. 1823 children (916 girls and 907 boys), aged 3–6, attending 31 different pre-schools in Warsaw, were examined in 2014. Stool specimens were tested in the Department of Epidemiology and Tropical Medicine of the Military Institute of Medicine by light microscopy using three different diagnostic methods (direct smear in Lugol’s solution, decantation with distilled water, Fülleborn’s flotation). The material for testing, fixed in 10% formalin, was collected three times at 2–3-day intervals.

Results. Parasitological examination of the stool specimens showed intestinal parasitic infestations in 47 children (2.57% of the study group). Only 7 children were infested with pathogenic parasites (6 cases of giardiasis and 1 enterobiasis) and required antiparasitic treatment. 17 children were infested with potentially pathogenic protozoa (Blasocystis sp.) and 26 with non-pathogenic protozoa (Entamoeba coli, Endolimax nanai), but because of lack of gastrointestinal symptoms (asymptomatic carriage) they did not require a treatment.

Conclusions. Performed examination show low infection rates among children from a large urban agglomeration. In the absence of epidemiological surveillance over the prevalence of the majority of intestinal parasitic diseases in Poland, and because some diagnostic centres generate positive test results using valueless methods, the propagation of parasitological diagnostics in light microscopy in direction of prevalence of intestinal parasitic infestations, especially among patients with gastrointestinal symptoms, is strongly recommended.

intestinal parasites, light microscopy, children, Warsaw

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