The Awa indigenous people of Ecuador live in remote areas and were included in health programs only recently. The first screening for parasitic infections in the Awa communities was implemented in the context of community epidemiology. During the site visits in each community, the health-care staff collected the samples for stool microscopy and serology for Strongyloides. A total of 705 individuals consented for the study, representing 40% of the Awa population living in the targeted communities; 184 (26%) participants supplied a stool sample. Giardia intestinalis was found in about 11% of samples. Prevalence of Ascaris lumbricoides and Trichuris trichiura was 54.9% and 36.9%, respectively. No hookworm eggs were found. In addition, Strongyloides stercoralis larvae were found in eight individuals (4.3%), whereas serology was positive in 22.7% of the individuals tested. The community-based approach resulted in an impressive participation. There was a high prevalence of parasites associated with relevant morbidity.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Infectious Diseases