Prevalence and the factors influencing soil transmitted helminths among school age children of 5 to 14 years in a rural area of Coimbatore district

Xavier C. Rajan, Sivamani Manivasagan, Appalaraju Boppe


Background: Highest intensity of soil transmitted helminthiasis (STH) is seen among school age children. The objective of this study is to find out the prevalence and factors associated with STH infection among school age children of 5-14 years in a rural area of Coimbatore district.

Methods: After getting ethical clearance, five of the fourteen villages of Vedapatti were selected by cluster sampling method. Totally 819 participated in the survey conducted between November 2015-July 2016 in the field practice area. Consent from parents and assent from child were obtained. Structured questionnaire was used to collect information. Totally 610 gave one adequate stool sample. Early morning samples were collected and transported to the laboratory within four hours. Formal ether concentration method was performed and examination was done. Data analysis was done with SPSS-19 software. Prevalence is expressed in percentage with 95% confidence interval (CI). Univariate and Multivariate analysis were performed. Strength of association was expressed in terms of odds ratio and adjusted odds ratio with 95% confidence interval. P value <0.05 was considered as statistically significant.

Results: The prevalence of STH was 7.70% (95% CI: 5.58- 9.82). Ascaris lumbricoides was highly prevalent 6.9% (4.89% to 8.91%) followed by hook worm 0.2(0.15% to 0.55%) and Trichuris trichura 0.7%(0.04% to 1.36%). Uni variate and Multivariate logistic regression analysis showed that pucca houses offered protection against STH.

Conclusions: STH is still a public health problem in Coimbatore. When regular deworming is accompanied by appropriate sanitation and hygiene activities designed to prevent re infection of STH, a long-term impact can be achieved.


Soil transmitted helminthiasis, Prevalence, School age children, Coimbatore

Full Text:



World Health Organization, Focusing on STH: towards an integrated approach for STH control. Available at en/ Accessed 10 September 2019.

Statement regarding Soil Transmitted Helminths, by CDC. Available at ntd/. Accessed 10 September 2019.

Pullan RL, Smith JL, Jasrasaria R, Brooker SJ. Global numbers of infection and disease burden of soil transmitted helminth infections in 2010. Parasites Vectors. 2014;7:37.

WHO: 2012. Eliminating soil-transmitted helminthiasis as a public health problem in children soil-transmitted helminthiasis progress report; 2001-2010.

Ramesh GN, Malla N, Raju GS, Sehgal R, Ganguly NK, Mahajan RC, et al. Epidemiological study of parasitic infections in lower socio-economic group in Chandigarh (north India). Indian J Med Res. 1991;93:47-50.

Singh P, Gupta ML, Thakur TS, Vaidya NK. Intestinal parasitism in Himachal Pradesh. Indian J Med Sci. 1991;45:201-4.

Singh S, Raju GV, Samantaray JC. Parasitic gut flora in a north Indian population with gastrointestinal symptoms. Trop Gastroenterol. 1993;14:104-8.

Kattula D, Sarkar R, Ajjampur SS, Minz S, Levecke B, Kang G. Prevalence and risk factors for soil transmitted helminth infection among school children in south India. Indian J Med Res. 2014;139:76-82.

Naish S, McCarthy J, Williams GM. Prevalence, intensity and risk factors for soil-transmitted helminth infection in a South Indian fishing village. Acta Trop. 2004;91:177-87.

World Bank. The global burden of disease. Appendix B. In: World development report. Investing in health-world development indicators. New York: World Bank and Oxford University Press; 1993;213-25.

Richmond JB, Kotelchuck M. Personal health maintenance for children. West J Med. 1984;141:816–23.

Abera B, Alem G, Yimer M, Herrador Z. Epidemiology of soil transmitted helminths, Schistosomamansoni and haematocrit values among schoolchildren in Ethiopia. J Infect Dev Ctries. 2013;7(3):253-60.

Curtale F, Pezzotti P, Sharbini AL, al Maadat H, Ingrosso, Saad YS. Knowledge, perceptions and behaviour of mothers toward intestinal helminths in Upper Egypt: implications for control. Health Policy Plan. 1998;13:423-32.

World health organisation: 1998. Control of Tropical Disease Geneva. Available at Accessed 10 September 2019.

Information regarding National Deworming Day in India from NHM website. Available at Accessed 10 September 2019.

Ragunathan L, Kalivaradhan SK, Ramadass S, Nagaraj M,Ramesh K. Helminthic infections in school childrensPudhuchery, South India. Microbiol Immunol Infect. 2010;43(3):228–32.

Manual of basic techniques for a health laboratory, Second Edition: World Health Organization, Geneva 2003.

World Health Organization; Geneva: 1994. Bench Aids for the Diagnosis of Intestinal Parasites. Available at 37323. Accessed 10 September 2019.

Chatterjee KD. Text book of Parasitology 13th edition. CBS publishers and distributors. 2015.

Shubha D, Fatima F. A coprological survey for assessing intensity of parasitic infection in school children: cross-sectional study. Trop Parasitol. 2011;1(2):88-93.

Yimer M, Hailu T, Mulu W, Abera B. Evaluation performance of diagnostic methods of intestinal parasitosis in school age children in Ethiopia. BMC Research Notes. 2015;8:820.

Mani TR, Rajendran R, Munirathinam A, Sunish IP, Md Abdullah S, Augustin DJ, et al. Efficacy of co-administration of albendazole and diethyl-carbamazine against geohelminthiases: a study from South India. Trop Med Int Health. 2002;7:541-8.

Kaliappan SP, George S, Francis MR, Kattula D, Sarkar R, Minz S, et al. Prevalence and clustering of soil-transmitted helminth infections in a tribal area in southern India. Trop Med Int Health. 2013;18(12):1452–62.

Fernandez MC, Verghese S, Bhuvaneswari R, Elizabeth SJ, Mathew T, Anitha A, et al. A comparative study of the intestinal parasites prevalent among children living in rural and urban settings in and around Chennai. J Commun Dis. 2002;34:35–9.

WHO (World Health Organization) Report of the WHO Informal Consultation on the use of chemotherapy for the control of morbidity due to soil-transmitted nematodes in humans. Geneva: WHO; 1996. (WHO/ CTD/ SIP/ 96.2). Available at Accessed 10 September 2019.