Prevalence of intestinal parasites in three socioeconomically-different regions of Sivas, Turkey
The study was carried out to determine the prevalence of parasites in three socioeconomically-different regions (Alibaba, Esentepe, and Cayboyu) of Sivas, Turkey, to determine the most accurate method for the diagnosis of taeniasis and enterobiasis, to determine the importance of household visits in primary healthcare to control parasitic diseases, and to treat intestinal parasitic diseases in those regions. Both stool specimens and cellophane tape (CT) samples were taken from 1,864 participants during 641 household visits in the three regions. The age groups included were pre-school [(0-6 year(s)], primary school (715 years), and the upper age group (16 years and above). The total prevalence of intestinal parasites in the three regions was 37.2%. Eleven intestinal parasite species were detected in both stool specimens and CT samples. Giardia intestinalis and Enterobius vermicularis were the most frequent species identified in all the three regions. Region I (Alibaba) had a higher prevalence of parasites compared to the other two regions. There was no significant difference between Region II (Esentepe) and Region III (Cayboyu) in isolation of intestinal parasites. There were statistically significant differences between the age groups when the rates of parasitic infection were compared. The highest prevalence of parasitosis was observed among the age group of 7-15 years and in the socioeconomically lowest one of the three regions. While the most accurate way of diagnosis for taeniasis was the combined usage of the CT and direct preparation methods, the CT method was the best method for the diagnosis of enterobiasis. Thus, the local administrators in cities need to pay more attention to the prevention of parasitic infections along with improvements in educational, environmental and sanitary conditions.