Clinical and serological evidence of Toxocara infection in school children from Morrope district, Lambayeque, Peru

Rev Inst Med Trop Sao Paulo. 2008 Mar-Apr;50(2):101-5. doi: 10.1590/s0036-46652008000200007.


The aim of this study was to estimate the frequency of human toxocariosis in a child population from Morrope district, Lambayeque, Peru. From October to December 2005, 182 school children (96 male and 86 female) were studied. Blood samples were collected for Toxocara ELISA-IgG test and hematological examination. Additionally, stool samples were collected for coproparasitological examination to check cross reactions. We found frequency of positives in 32.4% (59/182) with a significant higher proportion of positivity in male children (p < 0.00001). 71.2% of the children with positive serology (52 male and seven female), were between five and 10 years old, 77.96% had respiratory symptoms, 61.02% had ocular manifestations, 38.98% had hepatic symptoms, 38.98% had mild or moderate eosinophilia, signs statistically associated with seropositivity. 83.5% of studied population had some intestinal parasite, such as: Blastocystis hominis (53.3%), Giardia lamblia (31.3%), Entamoeba coli (29.1%), Entamoeba histolytica/E. dispar (1.1%), Hymenolepis nana (5.49%), and Ascaris lumbricoides (3.3%), but they had not any association with serology results. The ownership of dogs or/and cats were significantly associated with seropositivity to anti-Toxocara antibodies although the presence of such pets within the house was not. In conclusion, clinical and serological evidence of Toxocara infection exists in the studied population.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Helminth / blood
  • Cats
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Dogs
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
  • Feces / parasitology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulin G / blood
  • Infant
  • Intestinal Diseases, Parasitic / diagnosis
  • Intestinal Diseases, Parasitic / epidemiology*
  • Intestinal Diseases, Parasitic / parasitology
  • Male
  • Peru / epidemiology
  • Prevalence
  • Risk Factors
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Toxocara / immunology
  • Toxocara / isolation & purification*
  • Toxocariasis / diagnosis
  • Toxocariasis / epidemiology*


  • Antibodies, Helminth
  • Immunoglobulin G