Prevalence of Intestinal Parasitic Infections among Individuals Referred to the Medical Centers of Coastal Cities, Guilan Province, Northern Iran, 2015-2017
Background: Intestinal parasitic infections (IPIs) are among the major public health problems, especially in developing countries. Northern Iran is highly endemic area for these infections. This study aimed to investigate the prevalence of IPIs among people referred to the medical centers of the coastal cities in Guilan Province, Northern Iran.
Methods: In this descriptive cross-sectional survey, 1232 stool samples were collected during 2015-2017. We used a structured questionnaire to obtain socio-demographic characteristics, and stool examination was performed using direct slide smear, formalin-ether concentration, trichrome and modified Ziehl-Neelsen staining techniques. The results were analyzed using SPSS and Chi-square test.
Results: The overall prevalence of IPs in our study was 17.8% (219/1232). The most common IP was Blastocystis sp. 154/1232 (12.59%), followed by Giardia lamblia 50/1232 (4.1%) and Entamoeba hartmani 45/1232 (3.7%). Out of the 219 positive patients, 82 (55.14%) and 137 (44.85%) were female and males, respectively. Regarding the socio-demographic variables, educational status (P=0.226), contact with domestic animals and soil (P=0.476), age years (P=0.78), Occupation (0.637) and Gender (P=0.417) were not significantly associated to IPIs.
Conclusion: In the past, parasitic infections were more prevalent in different parts of Iran. However, today it has declined indicating a significant improvement in level of individual hygiene, and environmental standards.
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