2001 Volume 11 Issue 3 Pages 126-130
From among 428 Nepalese schoolchildren hair samples of 102 children with clinical features of tinea capitis, obtained by the sterile hairbrush method, were examined by mycological techniques.
Age varied between 4-16 years. Itching was experienced by 96.1 % sample subjects and hair loss by 32.4%. Of the 102, 11 (10.8%) were positive for Trichophyton violaceum (TV), 6 being from urban areas, the rest from rural areas. Amongst the 11 patients, 7 (63.6%) were girls and rest boys. Statistical associations were observed between the place of haircut and isolation of the organism (X2 = 15.2, p <0.01). Statistical association was also present between frequency of bathing and isolation of organism. Sharing of combs was associated with the culture-positive subjects. The prevalence of tinea capitis in the urban and rural children was 2.3% and 3.0%, respectively.
The only isolated organism was TV. An association of the isolation of TV was found with risk factors such as family members, sharing of combs, frequency of bathing with the organism. Hair loss was more common in the urban children. Discouragement of sharing combs, increased frequency of hair washing, and use of uncontaminated hair cutting instruments are recommended. J Epidemiol, 2001 ; 11 : 126-130