Epidemiology of gastrointestinal parasites among school children in Minna, Niger State, Nigeria
Gastrointestinal parasites usually inhabit the intestines of man and various animals. Consequently a total of 300 faecal, 300 Hand wash and 18 Soil samples from school children were analyzed using formal concentration method, while 20 flies were analysed using Soul technique, all from three different schools; Tudun Fulani Model, Chanchaga Model and Shango Primary Schools. A prevalence of 175 (58.33%) was recorded from the Stool sample analyzed, in which four (4) parasites were isolated: Ascaris lumbricoides 91 (30.33%), Schistosoma mansoni 19 (6.33%), Entamoeba histolytica 11 (3.67%) and Hookworms 54 (18%). There was a significant (P<0.05) difference in the prevalence of gastrointestinal parasites encountered, also with age groups with respect to location. Stool analysis with respect to gender showed no significant (P>0.05) difference. A prevalence of 51 (17%) was recorded from the hand analysis, in which three (3) parasites were isolated: Ascaris lumbricoides 31 (10.33%), Entamoeba histolytica 5(1.67%) and Hookworm 14 (4.67%). There was no significant (P>0.05) difference in the prevalence of gastrointestinal parasite encountered from hand-wash analysis with respect to location. Hand-wash analysis with respect to age group and gender also showed no significant (P>0.05) difference. A prevalence of 10 (55.56%) was detected from the soil sample analysis where 2 parasites were isolated; A. lumbricoides 6 (33.33%) and Hookworms 4 (22.227%). There was also no significant (P<0.05) difference in the prevalence of gastrointestinal parasite encountered from soil analysis. This study has shown that various sources are responsible for the transmission of gastrointestinal parasites; hence there is every need to maintain a high level of hygiene combined with mass public enlightenment to check the spread of this infection in Minna.
Keywords: Gastrointestinal, Hookworm, Epidemiology, Entamoeba histolytica