SINET: Ethiopian Journal of Science

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Prevalence of intestinal helminthic infections among household rats in Addis Ababa

Moges Kassa, Tsehai Assefa


This paper reports the prevalence of intestinal helminthic infections among 101 Rattus rattus collected in Addis Ababa, from November, 1996 to December, 1997. Examination of faecal samples from each rat by the formol-ether concentration technique revealed that 44/101 (43.6%) of the rats were positive for a single intestinal parasite: 31/101 (30.7%) for Hymenolepis diminuta, and 13/101 (12.9%) for Hymenolepis nana. Double infection was recorded in 7/101 (7%). Among the double infection, 3% were infected with H. diminuta and H. nana, and 4% with H. diminuta and Syphacia obveleta. H. diminuta was the most frequent followed by H. nana. S. obveleta was found only in association with H. diminuta. The infection rates for cestodes in the present study were compared with the rates reported for cities in other countries. These findings suggest that household rats could be potential sources of human infections in the areas studied.

SINET: Ethiopian Journal of Science Vol. 23, No. 1 (June 2000), pp. 115-120

Key words/phrases: Hymenolepis diminuta, H. nana, Syphacia obveleta, household rats, Addis Ababa

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