Sharmaine D. Codiam, Mark Stephen S. Ballog, Chester N. Dongga-as, Brenda B. Lumines, Marjuline L. Lawagan
Soil contaminated with helminth eggs is a potential source of infection and posesa threat to the community. The study identifiedand established the presence of soil-transmitted helminths (STHs), and determined the prevalence of STHs in the province of Kalinga.Three hundred soil samples were collectedfrom four sites: pathway, backyard, inside living quarters and school playground in selected barangays withinTanoan, Lubuagan, Rizal and Tabuk City in the months of March to July 2017.The samples were tested for the presence of zoonotic STH ova using a modified sodium nitrate (NaNO3) flotation technique. The number of soil samples contaminated with at least one STH ova was high at 70.33%, with the highest number of infected samples occurring in the backyards (85.33%), followed by the pathways (77.33%), the school playgrounds (68.00%) and inside the living quarters (50.67%). The high parasite load in the soil shows a high risk of infection by STHs among residents and animals in the areas of the study. All sites were found to be contaminated with helminths from five nematode genera, with Ancylostomaeggs (41.33%) the highest, followed by Toxocara(25.67%), Trichuris(15.33%),Ascaris(13.67%), and Enterobius(11%). The high prevalence of STH eggsin soil samples highlights the risk of transmission to the human population and raises the issue of hygiene standards and public health risks at sites under investigation.
Keywords: Soil-transmitted helminths, parasites, nematodes, prevalence