SEROSURVEY OF ANTI-TOXOCARA ANTIBODIES AND RISK FACTORS IN RELATION TO VITAMIN D LEVELS AMONG PREGNANT WOMEN OF DUHOK CITY –KURDISTAN REGION
Background: Toxocariasis is a common parasitic disease which is caused by Toxocara Spp. with a worldwide distribution, which causes visceral larval migrans as loss of vision, hypereosinophilia, encephalitis, hepatomegaly, and lungs damage.
Materials and Methods: The blood samples were collected randomly from 150 pregnant women attending maternity hospital in Duhok city, Kurdistan Region. A special questionnaire form is arranged for each woman including the following information’s (age, residency, occupation, family income, paternity, contact with cats, presence of domestic cats and dogs, working in home garden, source of drinking water, washing hands before meals, consumption of raw meat).
The blood was used to investigate the blood parameters as (WBCs, lymphocytes, RBCs, Hb., HCT, PCV, and Platelets) on the other hand, in other tubes, the blood was centrifuged to obtain sera for the detection of both anti-Toxocara antibodies by using ELISA IgG test, and vitamin D level.
Results: Out of the 150 pregnant women, only 18/150 (12%) were seropositivity to anti-Toxocara antibodies; 10 out of the 18 (55.5%) pregnancies have Vitamin D deficiency. While 132 pregnancies were seronegative to anti-Toxocara antibodies, 69 out of 132 (52.3%) had Vitamin D deficiency. The seroprevalence of anti –Toxocara was higher in rural patients than urban. High infection rates were indicated in housewives 15(12.6%) than employed one 3(9.6%). Statical significance and association was indicated related to the educational level with P-value less than 0.05. High rates of infection showed in illiterate pregnants with 13(20.6%).
Conclusion: The data show that Toxocara seropositivity is a significant health problem. However, insufficient attention is still being paid to this disease.
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