Co-infection of Parvovirus B19 and Plasmodium falciparum among Sickle Cell Disease patients in Benin City, Nigeria

  • I.M. Moses-Otutu
  • R.O. Okojie
  • F.O. Akinbo
  • N.O. Eghafona
Keywords: parvovirus B19, Benin City, P. falciparum, sickle cell disease


Background: Infections by parasites, bacteria, viruses such as human parvovirus B19 amongst others, have been widely reported as contributing to high prevalence of anaemia in many populations. This study was conducted to determine the co-infection of Plasmodium falciparum and human parvovirus B19 among sickle cell disease (SCD) patients in Benin City, Edo State, Nigeria.

Methodology: A total of 400 participants consisting 300 SCD patients (134 males, 166 females) and 100 (38 males, 62 females) apparently healthy subjects with haemoglobin AA (which served as control) who were contacted in homes, schools and offices, were enrolled for the study. The age of the participants ranged from 1 to 54 years. Venous blood was collected for detection of P. falciparum using Giemsa stain while parvovirus B19 was detected with enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Full blood count was estimated using Sysmex KX-21N haematology auto-analyzer.

Results: An overall prevalence of parvovirus B19 and P. falciparum co-infection observed among SCD patients in this study was 3.0% while single infection was 14.0% for P. falciparum and 26.7% for parvovirus B19. Religion was associated with 0 to 22 fold increased risk of acquiring co-infection of P. falciparum and parvovirus B19. Gender was significantly associated with P. falciparum infection (p=0.0291) while tribal extraction, platelet index and seasonal variation were significantly associated with single parvovirus B19 or co-infection of P. falciparum and parvovirus B19 (p<0.05).

Conclusion: The provision of strict regulatory policy concerning the screening of whole blood or pooled plasma before the use of blood products and transfusion of SCD patients is advocated.

Keywords: parvovirus B19, Benin City, P. falciparum, sickle cell disease


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eISSN: 1595-689X