Evaluation of parasitic contamination from local sources of drinking-water in Abakaliki, Ebonyi State, Nigeria
Water-borne parasitic infections have become a source of concern in recent times due to the contamination of various drinking-water sources. A survey on the parasitic contamination of drinking-water sources was carried out in Ezza North Local Government Area of Ebonyi State, south-east Nigeria. This is to evaluate the extent of contamination of these water sources and their public health implication. A total of 63 water samples were investigated from five major water sources within the study area. The samples were collected from ponds, wells, streams, boreholes and rain water and examined using Calcium Carbonate Floatation and Simple Microscopic methods. Among the water sources, pond water had the highest occurrence of parasites 35.9% followed by stream 28.1%, well 21.9%, borehole 9.4% while rainwater had the least 4.7%.Each of the sample sources harboured at least one parasite. Three parasites – Gardia lamblia, Entamoeba histolytica and Cryptos poridiumparvum were observed in their cystic and oocystic forms. Among these parasites, Entamoeba histolystica had the highest prevalence of 29(45.3%), Gardia lamblia 22 (34.4%) and Cryptos poridium parvum 13 (20.3%). The results showed the extent of parasitic contamination of the various drinking water sources in the study area and the susceptibility of the populace to water-borne diseases. Hence, provision of portable water is of utmost importance within the area and the state in general. The inhabitants of the area should also stop activities that lead to the contamination of the water bodies and boil their drinking-water before consumption.
Keywords: water-borne, parasites, contamination, cyst, oocyst.