The study was conducted to determine the prevalence of giardiasis among school children in Afikpo North Local Government Area, Ebonyi State, Nigeria. The study was carried out from June to October, 2015. Direct smear, iodine wet mounts, and the formol-ether concentration technique were used to analyze the stool samples. Out of 600 stool samples from pupils aged 5-16 years from six primary schools examined, 30 (5.0%) were infected. The prevalence rate was higher among males (5.7%) than among females (4.8%), although the difference was not statistically significant (χ2 = 0.91, df = 1, p > 0.05). Pupils in the 8- to 10-year age group had the highest prevalence (5.8%, n = 260), while those in the age group of 11-13 years had the lowest prevalence (3.9%, n = 230). Similarly, pupils in primary 2 had the highest prevalence (7.1%, n = 170) while those in primary 6 had the lowest (2.5%, n = 80). Infection was higher among children whose parents were traders (11.7%, n = 120) and farmers (10.0%, n = 100, than among those whose parents were civil servants (1.6%, n = 380). There was a significant statistical difference in the prevalence of giardiasis with respect to occupation of parents of these children (χ2 = 25.85, df = 2, p < 0.05). On the sources of drinking water, children who drank rain and stream water recorded high prevalence rates of (6.3% n = 270) and (5.7% (n = 230), respectively. There was statistically significant difference in the prevalence of giardiasis with respect to the sources of water (χ2 = 6.42, df = 2, p < 0.05). These findings indicate that giardiasis was prevalent among school children in Afikpo. It is recommended that adequate health education and sanitary measures be carried out in order to decrease the rate of Giardia infection in school children.
Manila Journal Of Science 11 (2018), Pp 1-10 (662.7 KiB)