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Medicina (Buenos Aires)

Print version ISSN 0025-7680On-line version ISSN 1669-9106


MENGHI, Claudia I; IUVARO, Franco R; DELLACASA, María A  and  GATTA, Claudia L. Survey of intestinal parasites among an aboriginal community in Salta. Medicina (B. Aires) [online]. 2007, vol.67, n.6, pp.705-708. ISSN 0025-7680.

The prevalence of intestinal parasitoses by protozoans and helminths was determined in an aboriginal community located 6 km from Tartagal, province of Salta, Argentina. The age of the inhabitants studied ranged from 1 to 49 years old. A total of 112 stool samples were collected in sodium acetate-acetic acid- formalin solution (SAF). Each sample was obtained in three different days, alternatively. Ritchie biphasic concentration method and Faust flotation technique were applied. For survey of Enterobius vermicularis, 68 samples were collected during six consecutive days using anal swabs. For the diagnosis of Dientamoeba fragilis, the modified trichrome Gomori-Wheatley staining technique was used. One hundred and six (94.6%) subjects resulted positive for enteric parasites. Forty-four (41.5%) individuals were positive for four or more parasites. The parasites more frequently found were, among the protozoans Blastocystis hominis (58.9%), Entamoeba coli (51.8%), Giardia lamblia (27.7%) and Entamoeba histolytica/E. dispar (24.1%). Among the helminths, the most frequent were hookworms (58.0%), Hymenolepis nana (31.2%) and Strongyloides stercoralis (24.1%). This is the first time that Entamoeba histolytica/E. dispar (24.1%) and Dientamoeba fragilis (2.7%) have been registered in the suburbs of Tartagal. This study reveals how intestinal parasitoses constitute a critical problem of public health in aboriginal communities like the one examined, where the lack of adequate sanitation conditions and unsuitable supply of water coexist.

Keywords : Intestinal parasitoses; Aboriginal communities; Salta; Argentina.

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