Distribution and risk factors associated with intestinal parasite infections among children with gastrointestinal disorders

Gastroenterol Hepatol Bed Bench. 2016 Dec;9(Suppl1):S80-S87.


Aim: Prevalence and risk factors associated with intestinal parasites among children ≤ 12 years old in Nahavand county western Iran, was the objective of this search.

Background: Intestinal parasites (IPs) are important health problems among most societies.

Methods: This cross sectional study was carried out during 6 months from April to September 2014 in Nahavand County western Iran. Fecal samples were collected from 500 children suffering from gastrointestinal disorders (GIDs) and examined by macroscopy and microscopic (using saline and iodine wet mount, formalin-ether sedimentation, Trichrome and modified Ziehl Neelsen staining) methods. Finally, data was analyzed using Chi-square (Chi2) test and Fisher's exact test as well as logistic regression.

Results: 21.8% (109/500) of the samples were infected by one or more IPs. The most common parasites were Blastocystis sp. (16.2%), followed by Cryptosporidium spp. (2.6%), Giardia lamblia (1.6%), and Entamoeba coli (1.6%). Prevalence of intestinal parasite infections were significantly associated with age (OR= 2.280; CI 95% = 1.375-3.830; P<0.002), gender (OR= 0551; CI 95% = 0.348-0.875; P<0.011), contact with domestic animal or soil (OR= 0.492; CI 95% = 0.282-0.860; P<0.013) and seasons (OR= 2.012; CI 95% = 1.254-3.227; P<0.004). There was a significant correlation between IPs with diarrhea (OR= 3.027; CI 95% = 1.712-5.345; P<0.001) and nausea or vomiting (OR= 3.261; CI 95% = 1.281-8.175; P<0.013).

Conclusion: Blastocystis sp. was the most prevalent parasites among children in Nahavand County and Helminthes infection have been dramatically decreased. Our finding shown that gender, age, season and contact with domestic animals or soil polluted are main predictive factors for intestinal parasite infections among children in this region. Moreover, IPs infection among children with gastrointestinal disorders were significantly associated with diarrhea and vomiting or nausea signs.

Keywords: Children; Distribution and risk factors; Parasitic infection; Western Iran.