Risk Factors for Giardia Infection Among Hospitalized Children in Cuba

Ann Trop Med Parasitol. 2011 Jan;105(1):57-64. doi: 10.1179/136485911X12899838413385.

Abstract

The risk factors associated with Giardia infection, in children hospitalized in Havana, Cuba, were recently explored. Children aged ≥5 years were more likely to be positive for Giardia infection than the younger children, with an odds ratio (OR) of 3·41 [95% confidence interval (CI) = 1·36-9·69]. The risk factors found to be associated with Giardia infection in univariate analyses were rural residence (OR = 3·01; CI = 1·23-7·35), belonging to a household that did not receive water from an aqueduct (OR = 3·27; CI = 1·21-8·91), drinking unboiled water (OR = 3·64; CI = 2·14-6·26), nail biting (OR = 3·47; CI = 1·97-6·08), eating unwashed vegetables raw (OR = 4·84; CI = 2·33-10·14), and a personal (OR = 3·23; CI = 1·58-6·59) or family history (OR = 3·96; CI = 1·53-10·47) of previous parasitic infection. In multivariate analyses, however, only two (modifiable) risk factors were found to be independently and significantly associated with Giardia infection: nail biting and eating unwashed vegetables raw. It therefore seems that, at least at the individual level, giardiasis-prevention activities in Havana should be focussed on health education to improve personal hygiene and food-related practices. If appropriately managed, the surveillance of drinking water and foodstuffs, for Giardia and other parasites, might also help to reduce the hospitalization of Cuban children.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Animals
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cuba / epidemiology
  • Feces / parasitology*
  • Female
  • Giardia lamblia / pathogenicity*
  • Giardiasis / epidemiology
  • Giardiasis / etiology
  • Giardiasis / prevention & control*
  • Hospitalization / statistics & numerical data*
  • Humans
  • Hygiene / education
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Male
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Nail Biting
  • Odds Ratio
  • Risk Factors
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Vegetables / parasitology
  • Water / parasitology*
  • Water Supply / standards*

Substances

  • Water