Plasmodium parasitaemia among pregnant women attending ante-natal clinic at the military hospital Port Harcourt, Rivers state, Nigeria.
Plasmodium parasitaemia was determined among pregnant women attending Ante-Natal Clinic at Military Hospital Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria using the Standard parasitological technique. Venous blood was collected from 200 pregnant women, both thick and thin blood films were made on clean greese-free glass slide and stained with 10% Giemsa stains diluted with 7.2 buffered water for 10 minutes and viewed under the microscope using the oil immersion(X100) objective. Of the 200 samples examined, 52 (26.00%) were positive for Plasmodium falciparum with highest prevalence of 15.50% among those in their first trimester, followed by 7.50% for those in the second trimester and 3.00% for those in the third trimester. Women within the age 21-25 years had greater percentage (10.50%) of infection compared with other age range and was followed by those within 26-30years with 6.00%. It was observed that women within the age of 41-45 years, though few, had zero infection rates. The prevalence rate of infection among pregnant women recorded in this study is relatively high and efforts should be intensified by all stakeholders to bring it to zero as malaria in pregnancy has a devastating effect.
Key words: Plasmodium, Pregnant women, Prevalence, Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria.