Author(s): Ikram Ullah, Ghulam Sarwar, Sabina Aziz, Muhammad Hussain Khan
Background: Worm infestation is a major public health problem in children of developing countries because of poor socioeconomic conditions and lack of good hygienic living. It causes not only nutritional deficiencies and anaemia but can lead to intestinal obstruction in the infested children. The purpose of this study was to determine the frequency of intestinal worms’ infestation in children of rural Peshawar area.
Material & Methods: This cross-sectional community based study was undertaken in rural area of Peshawar. The study population included 200 primary school children of 5-10 years age group of both sexes. Stool examination for ova detection was performed at Department of Pathology, Khyber Medical College Peshawar on three consecutive days. The results obtained were analyzed using SPSS software.
Results: Out of 200 children examined, 132 (66%) were found positive for various intestinal helminths infestation. There were 6 different types of helminths found in the specimens examined. The highest frequency of 45.5% (91 cases) was noted for Ascaris lumbricoides. Relatively high frequency of 8% (16 cases) was also seen for Hymenolepis nana. Other helminths found were Enterobious Vermicularis 4% (16 cases), Hookworm 3.5% (7 cases), Whipworm 3.5% (7 cases) and Tapeworm 1.5% (3 cases).
Conclusion: A high percentage of primary school children from rural Peshawar have intestinal worm infestation and majority of them have Ascaris lumbricoides.