Original Article

Seroepidemiological Study of Visceral Leishmaniasis (Kala-azar) in Children under 12 Years Old in North of Iran: An Observational Study in 2019-2020


Background: Visceral leishmaniasis (VL) caused by the Leishmania donovani complex that is transmitted by the bites of female sandflies. Mediterranean type of VL caused by L. infantum. While, Roudbar County of Guilan Province has been introduced as a suspected cutaneous leishmaniasis focus; there are no published data on the seroprevalence of VL in Guilan Province. We aimed to investigate the seroprevalence of this disease in Roudbar County.

Methods: This descriptive cross-sectional study was carried out in 2019-2020 among children less than 12 years of age to determine the seroprevalence of VL by direct agglutination test (DAT). Blood samples were randomly collected from 918 children under 12 years of age refers to the public health center in the clusters.

Results: Out of 918 children, 14 (1.52%) showed anti-Leishmania antibodies, with 4 (0.43%), 2 (0.21%), 8 (0.87%) anti-L. infantum antibodies at titers 1:800, 1:1600 and ≥1: 3200 respectively. All children with anti-Leishmania antibody titers of ≥1:800 were evaluated by a physician. Clinical manifestation of VL including fever, anemia and hepatosplenomegaly observed in a 6-year-old boy from Defraz village with anti-Leishmania antibody of titers ≥102400.This patient was admitted to the pediatric hospital in Rasht, capital of Guilan province, Iran and was successfully treated.

Conclusion: VL is being circulated with low prevalence in children up to 12 years old in Roudbar, northern part of Iran. Accordingly, it is critical to improve the awareness of physicians and public health supervisors about the importance of this fatal disease in Guilan province and especially in Roudbar area.

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IssueVol 17 No 3 (2022) QRcode
SectionOriginal Article(s)
DOI https://doi.org/10.18502/ijpa.v17i3.10621
Visceral leishmaniasis Seroepidemiology Direct agglutination test Children Iran

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How to Cite
Niaye Shad IA, Mahmoudi MR, Mohebali M, Atrkar Roshan Z, Ashrafi K, Akhoundi B, Majidi Shad B. Seroepidemiological Study of Visceral Leishmaniasis (Kala-azar) in Children under 12 Years Old in North of Iran: An Observational Study in 2019-2020. Iran J Parasitol. 2022;17(3):317-324.