Detection of parasite ova and egg in commonly consumed vegetables in Makurdi, Nigeria
Vegetables are important sources of nutrients, however infections arising from consumption of contaminated vegetables continue to cause serious public health problems leading to thousands of death cases yearly. This study was conducted to detect parasite ova and egg in commonly consumed vegetables in Makurdi, Nigeria. A total sample size of 420 vegetables comprising 60 samples each of tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum), Spinach (Spinacia oleracea), pumpkin (Telfairia occidentalis), cabbage (Brassica deracea), water leaf (Talinum triangulare), onions (Allium cepa), and garden egg (Solanumm elongena) were randomly purchased from six (6) markets namely: Wurukum, high Level, Wadata, Northbank, Railway and Modern Markets. 100 g of each collected vegetable was washed whole in 250 ml of 0.9% sodium chloride solution in the laboratory. Sedimentation technique was first employed after which floatation technique was also used in the preparation of the samples after which microscopic examination under x40 objective lens was carried out. Results obtained showed that 198 (47.14%) out of 420 samples were contaminated with parasite ova or egg. Ascaris lumbricoides (34.93%, 29.17%, 22.88%, 44.44%, 36.36%) had the highest frequency of occurrence as it was present in vegetables from five (5) out of the six locations sampled while Necator americanus (6%, 6.5%, 7.5%, 12%) had the least frequency of occurrence across all locations sampled. Other parasites detected include: Trichuris trichura (13.15%, 12.50%, 22.04%, 22.22%, 21%, 18.18%), Entamoeba histolytica (6%, 10.67%, 10.85%, 5%, 9.09%), Strongyloid esstercoralis (15.15%, 26.33%, 22.04%, 11.11%, 20%, 18.18%), and Ancyclostoma duodenale (24.79%, 14.83%, 14.69%, 22.22%, 25%, 18.18%). Chi-square (x2) analysis showed a significant difference (p = 0.025) between the rate of contamination of vegetables. This study underscore the need for community health education aimed at improvement of hygiene and sanitation in study community.
Keywords: Detection; parasite ova and egg; vegetables; Makurdi