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Introduction: Urinary Schistosomiasis (US) is a chronic water-borne infection caused by digenetic trematode belonging to the genus schistosoma, it is generally caused by Schistosoma haematobium. Bulinus globosus is a species of a tropical freshwater snail that acts as an intermediate host of Schistosoma haematobium. Aim: The study was aimed at ascertaining the prevalence of Schistosoma haematobium infection and to describe its intermediate hosts among school children in Makurdi.
Methodology: Snails were collected by hand picking and scooping net methods. An epidemiological survey research on urinary Schistosomiasis was undertaken from September to November 2017 among students that volunteered in the selected schools within Makurdi metropolis. A total of 97 freshwater snails were collected and 200 urine samples involving pupils aged between 5 to 18 years were collected and analyzed for the eggs of Schistosoma haematobium by microscopy using Urine Syringe Filtration Technique (USFT). Statistical analysis was performed using SPSS 20. Chi-square test was used to determine the significant difference between variables.
Results: Out of the 97 species of freshwater snails that were caught 41(42.3%) was Bulinus spp. Of the 200 urine samples analyzed, 49(24.5%) were found to be infected with ova of S. haematobium. The infection was higher among males 30(25.6%) than females 19(22.9%) although the difference was not statistically significant (χ2CAL=0.19, χ2TAB=3.84). The prevalence of Schistosoma haematobium infection among school children in relation to age showed that ages 15-19 years had the highest prevalence 13(38.2%) and ages 5-9 had the lowest prevalence 3(8.5%). The statistical analysis also revealed that there is no significant difference (8.302) in Schistosoma haematobium infection among the four schools in the study area. The presence of many snail species especially the Bulinus spp and increased contact time with the Schistosoma haematobium infested freshwater habitat was thought to be responsible for the prevalence of the disease in the area. Finding of this study shows that urinary Schistosomiasis was found to have a low prevalence in the area studied and there is the need to intensified integrated control measures to reduce or completely eradicate the disease.