Journal of Family & Community Medicine
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Year : 2003  |  Volume : 10  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 47-53

A spectrum of pathogenic and non-pathogenic intestinal parasites in pre-employment medical check-up for workers and their families

Faculty of Medicine and Allied Sciences, King Abdulaziz University Hospital, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Emad A Koshak
Department of Internal Medicine, King Abdulaziz University Hospital, P.O. Box 80215, Jeddah 21589
Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

PMID: 23011980

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Introduction: Stool analysis plays an important role in pre-employment tests for the screening of intestinal parasites in new workers. Objective: to explore the spectrum of intestinal parasites in stool samples of workers and their families during the pre-employment tests over a one-year period at King Abdulaziz University Hospital (KAUH). Methods: Subjects were selected sequentially from routine single stool analysis forms labeled for pre-employment tests. Stool specimens were examined using the formalin ether technique at the parasitology laboratory at KAUH. Results: Two hundred and ninety two different stool samples of the workers and their families were studied. Their ages ranged from 3 to 72 year old (mean 32 ± 8.5 SD) and females formed 58.6% of the number. Intestinal parasites were detected in 161 workers (55%). The prevalence of intestinal parasites in Saudi workers was significantly lower than non-Saudi nationals, 15.8% versus 57.9% (p<0.001). Of all the positive cases, pathogenic intestinal parasites were found in 40 % of them and the commonest were Trichuris trichuria (39.1%), Hookworm (34.2%), Entamoeba histolytica (16.1%). Non-pathogenic parasites were found in 19.5% and the commonest were Blastocystis hominis (34.8%), Endolimax nana (29.8%), Entamoeba coli (15.5%). One type of parasite was found in 75 (46.6%) and multiple different parasites were found in 86 (53.4%). There was a high significant correlation between the detection of pathogenic and non-pathogenic parasites (p<0.001). Conclusion: Infestation of stools with pathogenic and non-pathogenic intestinal parasites is a common finding in more than half of the new workers and their families. The correlation between non-pathogenic and pathogenic parasites reflects mutual risk factors, and their potential hazards cannot be overlooked. Effective stool screening and eradication strategies for intestinal parasites in new workers should be rigorously enforced.

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Journal of Family and Community Medicine | Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow
Online since 05th September, 2010