Iranian Journal of Parasitology 2016. 11(4):549-558.

Intestinal Parasitic Infections and Nutritional Status among Primary School Children in Delo-mena District, South Eastern Ethiopia
Begna TULU, Solomon TAYE, Yohannes ZENEBE, Eden AMSALU


Background: Although there are efforts being underway to control and prevent intestinal parasitic infections (IPIs) in Ethiopia, they are still endemic and responsible for significant morbidity. The aim of this study was to evaluate the prevalence of IPIs and their association with nutritional status among primary school children of Delo-Mena district, South Eastern Ethiopia.

Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted from April to May 2013. Demographic data was obtained, and IPIs was investigated in a single-stool sample by both direct stool examination and formol-ether concentration techniques. Anthropometric measurements were taken to calculate height for-age (HAZ), BMI-for-age (BAZ) and weight-for-age (WAZ) for the determination of stunting, thinness and underweight, respectively using WHO AntroPlus software. SPSS version 20 was used for statistical analysis and p value less than 0.05 was considered significant.

Results: Among 492 children studied (51% boys, aged 6–18 years, mean 10.93 +2.4) an overall IPIs prevalence of 26.6% was found. The prevalence of S. mansoni, E. histolytica/dispar, H. nana, A. lumbricoides, G. lambilia, T. trichiura, S. stercolaris, E. vermicularis, Hookworms and Taenia spp were 9.6%, 7.7%, 5.3%, 3.7%, 2.0%, 1.6%, 1.4%, 1.2%, 0.8% and 0.2% respectively. Stunting and underweightedness were observed in 4.5% and 13.6% of children and associated with IPIs (P<0.001) and (P=0.001), respectively.

Conclusion: IPIs and its associated malnutrition remain a public health concern in Delo-Mena district. Therefore, the overall health promotion activities coupled with snail control and de-worming to the students is crucial. Additionally, initiatives aimed at improving the nutritional status of school children are also important.


Prevalence; Cross-sectional; Nutritional status; Intestinal parasites; Ethiopia

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