Assessment of schistosomiasis and soil‐transmitted helminths prevalence in school‐aged children and opportunities for integration of control in local health services in Kwilu Province, the Democratic Republic of the Congo

Raquel Inocêncio da Luz, Sylvie Linsuke, P Lutumba, Epco Hasker, Marleen Boelaert

Research output: Contribution to journalA1: Web of Science-article

Abstract

Objective
To determine the prevalence of schistosomiasis (SCH) and soil‐transmitted helminths (STH) in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and to assess the capacity of the local health centres for diagnosis and treatment.

Methods
Cross‐sectional school‐based survey in two health districts in the Province of Kwilu. We collected a stool and a urine sample for parasitological examination. Urine filtration and duplicate Kato‐Katz thick smears were used for the diagnosis of SCH. Health centres were evaluated using a structured questionnaire.

Results
In total, 526 children participated in the study and the overall prevalence of Schistosoma mansoni infection was 8.9% (95% CI: 3.5–13.2) in both districts. The prevalence was higher in Mosango (11.7%; 95% CI: 8.9–14.8) than Yasa Bonga district (6.2%; 95% CI: 1.1–11.4). Urine filtration showed that Schistosoma haematobium infection was not present. The combined STH infection prevalence was 58.1% in both districts; hookworm infection was the most common STH found in 52.9% (95% CI: 29.3–62.4) of subjects, followed by Ascaris lumbricoides 9.3% (95% CI: 5.8–15.5) and Trichuris trichiura 2.1% (95% CI: 0.9–4.9). Mixed STH infections were observed as well as SCH‐STH coinfection.

Conclusion
Further mapping of both SCH and STH burden is needed, and coverage of preventive chemotherapy in school‐aged children should be increased.
Original languageEnglish
JournalTropical Medicine and International Health
Volume22
Issue number11
Pages (from-to)1442-1450
Number of pages9
ISSN1360-2276
Publication statusPublished - 2017

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