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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2019  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 23-29

Prevalence of soil-transmitted helminth infestations among children attending Integrated Child Development Service centers in a tea garden area in Darjeeling


1 Intern, Community Medicine, North Bengal Medical College, Darjeeling, West Bengal, India
2 Community Medicine, North Bengal Medical College, Darjeeling, West Bengal, India
3 Microbiology, North Bengal Medical College, Darjeeling, West Bengal, India

Correspondence Address:
Abhijit Mukherjee
Department of Community Medicine, North Bengal Medical College, Sushruta Nagar, Darjeeling, West Bengal
India
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DOI: 10.4103/tp.TP_55_17

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Introduction: Helminths infestations are common in children in the tea garden areas of Darjeeling, which present unique social, cultural, and environmental conditions. The present study was conducted to determine the proportion of soil-transmitted helminth (STH) infestations and association of STH to sociodemographic variables among children attending Integrated Child Development Services centers of a tea garden area in Darjeeling. Methodology: A cross-sectional descriptive study was conducted at Kiran Chandra Tea Estate, a tea garden in Naxalbari, Darjeeling, between August and September 2016. Stool samples were collected from children attending ICDS centers in the area and examined using the direct and concentration methods. A pretested and predesigned questionnaire was used to collect data on the sociodemographic profile of the children's families. Results: Stool samples could be collected from 52 (45%) of the 115 eligible children. The children were predominantly male (61.5%), from families with an income between Rs. 2000 and 4000 per month, had mothers with no formal education (75.0%) and came from households with no sanitary toilets (33.5). The proportion of children with STHs was 9.6%; with Ascaris found in 7.7% and Trichuris in 1.9%. No statistically significant differences were found in selected variables between the worm-positive and worm-negative children. Conclusions: The proportion of STH infestation is low among children <6 years of age attending ICDS in the study area probably because of the mass de-worming strategy of the government of India. Some differences in infestations among groups might suggest a clustering effect.


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