Prevalence of Intestinal Parasitic Infestations in Al-Anbar Province , West of Iraq.


Intestinal parasitic infestation still represents an economic and public health problem in the world particularly in the developing countries including the Middle East. To estimate the current prevalence of intestinal parasitic infection among people living in Al-Ramadi City/ West of Iraq. 1804 faecal samples were collected from males and females of different ages attending Al Gailani-Central Medical Laboratory, Al-Ramadi/Al-Anbar, from June 2006 to October 2009. One methods used were direct faecal microscopic examination and formol-ether concentration. The total infectivity rate by intestinal parasites was 19.7%. The overall infection rate by intestinal protozoa was significantly higher than intestinal helminth infection. E. histolytica was the most prevalent intestinal parasitic infection, whereas E. vermicularis was the predominant helminth. The frequency of the parasitic infestations was slightly higher among females (20.7%) than males (19.1%). A significantly higher prevalence of parasitic infections among younger age groups than the older age groups, since age group ≤5 years showed the highest infection rate (33.3%) when it was compared with other age groups (5.3%). Intestinal parasitic infestation was more prevalent among younger age groups. Screening for parasitic infestation is necessary as part of the general health care programme. Preference should be given to screening the younger age group to improve the standards of infant care.