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Intestinal coccidian parasitic infections in rural community in and around Loni, Maharashtra


Fecal samples examination of 310 individuals with variable gastro-intestinal (GI) disturbances but negative for intestinal parasites or bacterial pathogens, revealed 97 persons positive for infection with coccidian parasites employing modified Ziehl–Neelsen (ZN) staining and Sheather’s sucrose floatation technique. Cryptosporidium oocysts alone were detected in 64 (64/97; 66%) cases whereas Cyclospora oocysts along with Cryptosporidium were present in other 30 cases (31%); remaining three cases yielded only Cyclospora oocysts (3%) in their feces. None of the 97 cases positive for the two coccidian parasites was reactive for antibodies to human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) in their blood nor did any individual have history of taking immuno-suppressive drugs or antibiotics in the recent past. A breakdown of these 97 cases according to age and sex revealed not much difference in infection with two coccidian parasites. Further, comparison between two techniques revealed modified ZN staining was far superior to Sheather’s floatation. As the coccidian parasites, particularly Cryptosporidium is gaining much importance; therefore modified ZN staining should be included preferably along with other techniques in routine fecal examination which may lead to an overall improvement in the health-care facilities.

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The author is thankful to the Institutional Research and Ethical Committee, PIMS, Loni, Maharashtra for permission to conduct the work and the PIMS for providing necessary facilities during the study.

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Correspondence to A. K. Gupta.

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Gupta, A.K. Intestinal coccidian parasitic infections in rural community in and around Loni, Maharashtra. J Parasit Dis 35, 54–56 (2011).

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  • Intestinal coccidian parasites
  • Cryptosporidium parvum
  • Cyclospora cayetanensis
  • Infection in humans