Prevalence of intestinal parasites among expatriated workers in Al-Ain, United Arab Emirates

Ann Saudi Med. 1993 Mar;13(2):126-9. doi: 10.5144/0256-4947.1993.126.


A retrospective study was conducted among expatriate workers in Al-Ain City, United Arab Emirates (UAE), to determine the prevalence of pathogenic parasitic infestation. The study was based largely on expatriates arriving from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Iran, Philippines, Sri Lanka, and other Arab countries and mainly employed as food handlers, housemaids, baby sitters, and private drivers. This group represents 45.7% of the total number of new arrivals of expatriates during the period between 1 January 1985-31 December 1988. Stool specimens were examined in 60,268 screened individuals, of which 14,010 were found to be positive with pathogenic intestinal parasitic disease. Overall parasitic prevalence was 23.1%. The most common parasites found included: Ancylostoma (2.4%), Ascaris lumbricoides (6.6%), Trichuris trichiura (6.2%), and Giardia lamblia (2.4%). The distribution of intestinal parasites among expatriates was different for all nationalities. The results showed that Giardia lamblia was more prevalent among Iranians (54.7%) and Pakistanis (42.2%). Ancylostome species was found to be more prevalent among Sri Lankans (33.3%) and Indians (39.6%). Ascaris lumbricoides was more prevalent among Bangladeshis (33.1%), and Trichuris trichiura was more prevalent among Filipinos (40.2%).