Journal of Medical Laboratory Science

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Prevalence of Vaginal Trichomoniasis: An Assessment of Sensitivity and Specificity of Routine Diagnostic Methods in Yola, Nigeria

AA Abdulazeez, EB Alo


This study which was conducted on 400 females patients aged 15 to 60 years who complained of vaginal discharge and itching in some selected health centers in Yola between 2003 and March 2005, is a comparative study of the relative accuracies of three techniques for diagnosing vaginal trichomoniasis. Three sterile swab sticks were employed to obtain the High Vaginal Swabs (HVS) from each patient. The first swab was used for saline preparation, the second for Papanicolaou and Giemsa staining, the third for culture. A combined total of 40 (10%) cases of vaginal trichomoniasis was recorded from the four methods. The culture, Papanicolaou staining, Giemsa staining and wet preparation techniques recorded 8.0%, 3.5%, 2.3% and 1.5% recovery rates respectively. Culture method was used as
the Gold reference standard and World health Organization formula was applied to analyze the sensitivity of the three routine methods. Saline preparation method was found to be more specific (100%) than both Papaniculaou staining technique (99.4%) and Giemsa staining technique (99.7%), whereas both staining techniques were more sensitive
(43.8% and 28.1% respectively) than saline preparation (18.8%). A combination of two methods is however advocated in every HVS specimen analysis for improved sensitivity and specificity in routine investigation for Trichomonas vaginalis.

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