Urinary schistosomiasis in migrant population: a case series from a single centre in southern Italy

Infection. 2019 Jun;47(3):395-398. doi: 10.1007/s15010-018-1244-z. Epub 2018 Oct 30.


Purpose: To understand the frequency of urinary schistosomiasis, in migrants in clinical follow-up at the infectious disease outpatient clinic of ARNAS Civico Hospital in Palermo Italy, to raise awareness on this neglected tropical disease.

Methods: A retrospective analysis of migrant patients in clinical care in our centre during the triennium 2015-2017.

Results: 2639 migrants have been in clinical care during the triennium 2015-2017, 72% are male and 28% are female. 214 patients were tested for the presence of Schistosoma eggs in urine, these patients are all male. All the patients tested, reported macroscopic haematuria and the 54% had an increase in the peripheral blood eosinophil count. Ninety subjects had a positive microscopic examination for Schistosoma haematobium eggs. Patients were treated with a standard dose of praziquantel (40 mg/kg), and tested for Schistosoma 1 month after the end of therapy. All the subjects fully recovered.

Conclusions: Considering the migration phenomenon, the observation of these tropical diseases in European hospitals is becoming more and more common and an increasing number of health care professionals will be dealing with migrants. Searching for haematuria and eosinophilia and then testing for Schistosoma in this specific population will increase the number of diagnosis and correct treatment of urinary schistosomiasis, improving the patients' quality of life and preventing severe complications of the disease.

Keywords: Case Series; Migrants; Schistosomiasis; Urinary.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Animals
  • Anthelmintics / therapeutic use
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Italy / epidemiology
  • Male
  • Ovum
  • Praziquantel / therapeutic use
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Schistosoma haematobium / isolation & purification*
  • Schistosomiasis haematobia / diagnosis
  • Schistosomiasis haematobia / drug therapy
  • Schistosomiasis haematobia / epidemiology*
  • Schistosomiasis haematobia / parasitology
  • Transients and Migrants / statistics & numerical data*
  • Urine / parasitology
  • Young Adult


  • Anthelmintics
  • Praziquantel