Tropical Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology

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Seroprevalence of brucellosis among women with miscarriage at Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital, Zaria

Oluseyi B. Folagbade, Adebiyi G. Adesiyun, Adebola T. Olayinka, Abdullahi Randawa, Umma Bawa


Background: Brucellosis in animals has been identified as a common cause of  miscarriage. It is the most common zoonotic disease that leads to considerable morbidity in humans. It is rarely diagnosed in hospitals in Nigeria, and debate exists as to whether it is a more common cause of miscarriage in humans compared to other infective agents, especially with the finding of antibrucella activity in human amniotic fluid. Brucellosis in humans is a treatable disease and risk factors for transmission are prevalent in Zaria.
Objective: The objective of this study was to determine the seroprevalence of brucellosis among women with miscarriage.
Materials and Methods: This was a descriptive cross‑sectional study involving 121 women aged between 15 and 49 years with miscarriage who presented to Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital (ABUTH), Zaria from August 2014 to May 2015. Information on socio‑demographic characteristics, reproductive profile, and risk factors for contracting Brucella infection were obtained using a questionnaire. Blood samples were obtained and analysed for Brucella IgG and IgM using indirect enzyme‑linked immunosorbent assay kits. The data was analysed with SPSS, version 20.0.
Results: The mean age of the participating women was 29.07 years [standard deviation (SD) ±6.74]. The seroprevalence of brucellosis was 19.0%; 17.4% of the women had a recent infection, and 1.7% had a chronic infection. Age, history of previous miscarriage, consumption of milk products and consumption of roasted meat/barbecue had positive relationships with recent Brucella infection (χ2 = 9.706, P = 0.046; χ2 = 7.300, P = 0.026; χ2 = 3.169, P = 0.049; χ2 = 3.012, P = 0.050, respectively). Chronic Brucella infection had a positive relationship with number of pregnancies (χ2 = 8.036, P = 0.018). Regression analyses showed that age, history of previous miscarriage and history of recent miscarriage in animals reared were positively correlated with Brucella seropositivity and miscarriage (χ2 = 13.200, P = 0.022; χ2 = 9.795, P = 0.007; χ2 = 7.890, P = 0.005,  respectively).
Conclusion: There is a high prevalence of brucellosis among women with miscarriage in Zaria. The burden of the disease should be appreciated and routinely tested to prevent reoccurrence.


Key words: Brucellosis; miscarriage; prevalence.
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