Urinary schistosomiasis among pregnant women in some endemic tropical semi-urban communities of Anambra State, Nigeria
Urinary schistosomiasis is caused by the deposition of eggs by adult flukes in the blood vessels surrounding the bladder of the infected host. Schistosomiasis is ranked the second most important parasitic disease of man and undoubtedly the most important of helminth origin. This paper reports the prevalence of Schistosoma haematobium infection among pregnant women in some endemic tropical semi â€“ urban communities of Anambra State, Nigeria, screened using Medi-Test Combi 9 and urine centrifugation methods. Laboratory analysis of urine samples collected from 172 pregnant women indicated that 41 (23.8%) had urinary schistosomiasis with Anam community having the highest prevalence of 35.1% among other communities. The overall prevalence and intensity of infection among age groups showed that the youngest age group in the study, 16-20 years had the highest prevalence. Out of 24 women within this age group, 12 (50.0%) were infected among which 8 (33.3%) had light infection while 4 (16.6%) had moderate infection. The peak mean intensity of 7.6 eggs/10ml urine was observed in age group 16-20 years while the oldest age group, 41-45 years had the lowest mean intensity of 1.0 egg/10ml urine. Haematuria and proteinuria which are diagnostic for schistosomiasis were higher within age group 16-20 years in all the communities with Anam community having the highest prevalence of 50% for both biochemicals within age group 16-20 years. The findings from this study will be useful in developing specific programme for this special group of women.