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Parasitic infections in relation to practices and knowledge in a rural village in Northern Thailand with emphasis on fish-borne trematode infection

  • K. Chaisiri (a1), C. Jollivet (a2), P. Della Rossa (a2) (a3), S. Sanguankiat (a1), D. Wattanakulpanich (a1), C. Lajaunie (a4), A. Binot (a2) (a5), M. Tanita (a6), S. Rattanapikul (a6), D. Sutdan (a7), S. Morand (a8) and A. Ribas (a9)...

Abstract

The present study integrates several aspects of a parasitological survey in a rural community village combining community knowledge of parasites, their potential transmission routes and health risk factors. A rural community located in Northern Thailand was surveyed for intestinal parasites, and an overall prevalence of 45.2% for helminths and 4.8% for protozoan infections was identified. Socio-demographic characteristics, customs and perceptions were compiled using individual questionnaires and interviews for participants surveyed for parasitic screening. The results allowed us to determine the knowledge and perception of local people concerning helminthic infection and transmission. Despite the fact that the participants in this community were aware of parasitic transmission routes, their widespread custom of eating raw fish and meat render the reduction of helminthiasis difficult. A detailed study on the infection of fish-borne parasitic trematodes, the most prevalent helminth, allowed us to determine that the distance from a given household to the river is a determinant of infection intensity. Health education activities organised in the local community resulted in a change in perception of risks associated with parasite transmission.

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Copyright

This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution licence (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Corresponding author

Author for correspondence: A. Ribas, E-mail: aribas@ub.edu

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