A two- year retrospective study between 1996 and 1997 was carried out at the University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital, Enugu, to determine the patterns of intestinal helminth infection. A total of 13385 stool samples were examined using the direct smear technique. Some samples were also examined using the formal ether concentration method when direct smears were negative. Hookworm, Ascaris, Trichuris and Strongyloides were the most common helminths. Hookworm was the most prevalent (14.3%). Generally infection was most prevalent in adolescents aged 12-17 years, except for ascariasis, where the 6-11 year age group had the highest prevalence. Multiple infections were common (12.6%), with the most common combination being hookworm and ascariasis. To reduce the prevalence of various helminth infections the level of environmental sanitation, socioeconomic status of the populace and water supply should be improved.
2002 by The Pharmaceutical Society of Japan