Clinical onchocerciasis in Ini Local Government Area, Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria
A survey for prevalence and clinical manifestations of onchocerciasis was conducted in 5 rural communities of Ini Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria. Physical and parasitological examinations of 1,162 consenting persons were carried out between January and November 2001. Overall, 138 (11.9%) of those examined were infected with microfilariae of Onchocerca volvulus. Prevalence varied significantly (p<0.05) among the communities ranging from 7.8% in Ibiono Ewura to 16.4% in Obot Mme. There was no significant (p>0.05) difference between prevalence and sex. The mean microfilarial intensity was 6.0 mf/snip (range 4.1 mf/snip – 8.9 mf/snip) (p<0.05). The prevalence and intensity of infection increased rapidly with age in both sexes. The following clinical manifestations were found: dermatitis (58.2%), dizziness (57.6%), leopard skin (15.5%), nodules (6.9%) and blindness (1.4%). The result showed that onchocerciasis is hypoendemic in the study-area, however, if effective treatment with ivermectin is not initiated and sustained in the area, it might become a public health problem in the near future.
Keywords: Onchoceroiasis, prevalence, clinical manifestations, Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria.
Nigerian Journal of Parasitology Vol. 27 2006: pp. 36-40