Efficacy of artesunate and praziquantel combination on the prevalence of urinary schistosomiasis among children in Abua/Odual Local Government Area, Rivers State, Nigeria
A study to evaluate the efficacy of artesunate and praziquantel on urinary schistosomiasis was conducted in children between ages of 5-19 years in some communities in Abua/Odual Local Government Area of Rivers State, Nigeria. A total of three hundred and two (302) individuals who gave consent were assessed for the disease using the concentration technique. 55 (18.21%) infected individuals were exposed to the drugs in various regimens; Artessunate (4mg/kg x 3 times daily = 12mg/kg); Praziquantel (single oral dose of 40mg/kg) and Artesunate + Praziquantel combination (single oral dose of 40mg/kg + 4mg/kg x 3 times daily = 12mg/kg). A 40 (74.43%) reduction in the geometric egg count (eggs/ 1ml of urine) was recorded in the study with Artesunate single oral dose recording 11(64.70) cure, Praziquantel; 15(88.24) and the Artesunate + Praziquantel Combination; 14 (82.35). The three drug regimens variably reduced the clinical symptoms; heamaturia and proteinuria in the infected children. Sex and age of the children did not influence efficaciousness of the drugs. Praziquantel was more efficacious followed by the Artesunate + Praziquantel regimen. Arsunate single dose can substitute effectively for the chemotherapy of urinary schistosomiasis in endemic malarious regions of Nigeria. The study had revealed Artesunate as a cost effective intervention in the control of urinary schistosomiasis in the sampled areas of Abua/ Odua LGA of Rivers State.
Keywords: Urinary schistosomiasis; Artesunate; Praziquantel; haematuria; proteinuria; geometric mean egg count