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Prevalence of Intestinal Parasites in Children Living in Various Living Conditions in Slovakia

Author(s): Gabriela Strkolcova, Kristina Mravcova, Eva Barbusinova, Rastislav Mucha, Marian Varady, Maria Goldova

The purpose of the present study was to identify the prevalence of intestinal parasites among the children (aged ≤ 18 years) living in various living conditions in the Eastern Slovakia. Their faecal samples were examined applying the flotation concentration technique to verify the presence of helminth eggs and cysts of protozoan parasites. The evidence of Enterobius vermicularis pinworm was obtained using the perianal tape test. The diagnostics of the Cryptosporidium spp. oocysts was carried out applying the Kinyoun staining technique. The examined faecal samples were collected from 565 children living in Medzev (340 Roma children from the segregated Roma settlement; 123 children from the majority population; 33 children from the orphanage; 35 children from the elementary school; and 34 children from the kindergarten). They were divided into 5 age subgroups. In children from the segregated Roma settlement, the eggs of six helminth species: Ascaris lumbricoidesTrichuris trichiura, Ancylostomatidae family, Hymenolepis nanaTaenia spp., Enterobius vermicularis and two protozoan species: Giardia duodenalis and Cryptosporidium spp. were detected. The highest number of positive samples was observed in the group of children aged 6-9 years. In the majority group of children, the eggs of A. lumbricoides, Taenia spp., E. vermicularis and the cysts of G. duodenalis were detectedThe species detected in children from the orphanage included A. lumbricoidesH. nana, E. vermicularis and the cysts of G. duodenalis. Children attending the 3rd year of the elementary school and the kindergarten presented with the eggs of A. lumbricoides and E. vermicularis and the cysts of G. duodenalis. The examination of soil was performed applying the Kazacos’ technique and the samples were collected from the area surrounding the houses and drinking water sources in the segregated settlement. It revealed high occurrence of parasites in infective stages. The results presented herein indicate that the environmental factors contribute to the circulation of parasites among children and affect their health.

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