CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 · J Lab Physicians 2023; 15(02): 202-206
DOI: 10.1055/s-0042-1757417
Original Article

Strategies to Decrease the Prevalence of Soil-Transmitted Helminths in Central India

1   Department of Microbiology, Gandhi Medical College, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India
Shashank Purwar
2   Department of Microbiology, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India
Shipra Gupta
2   Department of Microbiology, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India
Ayush Gupta
2   Department of Microbiology, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India
Disha Gautam
2   Department of Microbiology, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India
› Author Affiliations
Funding None.


Background Intestinal parasites are a major public health problem in tropical countries. Over 1.5 billion people are infected with soil-transmitted helminths (STH), of which 225 million are in India. Parasitic infections are associated with poor sanitation, lack of safe potable water, and improper hygiene.

Materials and Methods The study was undertaken to ascertain the impact of control strategies, namely open-defecation free drive and mass drug administration of single dose albendazole. Stool samples received at AIIMS Bhopal Microbiology laboratory, across all age groups, were studied for protozoan trophozoites/cysts and helminthic ova.

Results Out of 4,620 stool samples, 389 (8.41%) were positive either for protozoal or helminthic infections. Protozoan infections were more common than helminthic infections with Giardia duodenalis infection being the most common, 201 (51.67%), followed by Entamoeba histolytica, 174 (44.73%). The helminthic infections constituted 14 (3.5%) of the positive stool samples with Hookworm ova in 6 (1.5%) cases.

Conclusion This study proves that strategies, namely “Swachh Bharat Abhiyan” and “National Deworming Day” started in 2014 and 2015 led to significant reduction of intestinal parasite infections in Central India, with a higher reduction of STH compared with protozoan parasite infection being ascribed to the activity spectrum of albendazole.

Publication History

Article published online:
20 October 2022

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