Prevalence of intestinal parasitic infections among HIV patients in Benin City, Nigeria

  • FO Akinbo
  • CE Okaka
  • R Omoregie


This study was carried out to determine the presence of intestinal parasites and their correlation with CD4+ T-cell counts and demographics among human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-positive patients in Benin City, Nigeria. Stool specimens from 2,000 HIV-positive patients and 500 controls (HIV-negative individuals) were examined for ova, cysts, or parasites, using standard procedures. In addition, patient’s blood samples were analyzed for CD4 counts by flow cytometry. An overall prevalence rate of 15.3% was observed among HIVpositive patients while 6.2% was noted among non-HIV subjects. HIV status was a significant (PB0.0001) risk factor for acquiring intestinal parasitic infections. Male gender, CD4 count B200 cell/ml, and diarrhea were significantly associated with an increased prevalence of intestinal parasitic infections among HIVpositive patients. The level of education, occupation, and source of water among HIV patients significantly (PB0.0001) affected the prevalence of intestinal parasitic infections. Ascaris lumbricoides was the most predominant parasite in both HIV-positive patients and controls. A CD4 count B200 cells/ml was significantly associated with only Isospora belli and Cryptosporidium infections. The presence of pathogenic intestinal parasites such as A. lumbricoides, hookworm, Giardia intestinalis, Entamoeba histolytica, Trichuris trichiura, and Taenia species among HIV-infected persons should not be neglected. Cryptosporidium species and I. belli were the opportunistic parasites observed in this study. Routine screening for intestinal parasites in HIV-positive patients is advocated.

Keywords: intestinal parasites; HIV; CD4 count; Demographics; Benin City


Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 1819-6357
print ISSN: 1993-2820