In any geographical area, surveys of the prevalence of intestinal helminths are necessary to suggest appropriate control measures. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of intestinal helminth infections in children of the Kashmir valley and to identify the risk factors. Stool samples were collected from 2256 children from rural as well as urban areas of the Kashmir valley. The samples were examined by simple smear and zinc sulphate concentration methods. Intensity of the infection was quantified by Stoll's egg-counting technique. Infection by at least one intestinal helminth was found in 71.18% of the sampled population. The prevalence of Ascaris lumbricoides was highest (68.30%), followed by Trichuris trichiura (27.92%), Enterobius vermicularis (12.67%) and Taenia saginata (4.60%). Light (57.1%) to moderate (42.8%) intensity of infection was observed for A. lumbricoides, while the majority of the infected children (92.3%) harboured a light intensity of infection for T. trichiura. The age group, rural or urban residence, type of water source, boiled or unboiled water, type of defecation site, level of personal hygiene and maternal education were associated with helminth infection. Adequate control measures are urgently needed to combat the high prevalence of intestinal helminths and risk factors in the children of Kashmir valley.
Audience take away:
- Status of helminth infestation in our part of world and the factors associated with it.
- Researchers can use the methodology used in this study to further their research.
- This study provides a practical solution to a problem that could simplify a designer’s job more efficient?