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Background: Globally, urinary schistosomiasis has devastating implications on school children. It predisposes them to dysuria, haematuria among others which can negatively influence their academic performance. This study determined the prevalence and associated risk factors of urinary schistosomiasis among basic school children in the Akyemansa district.
Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional study design using multi-stage sampling was used to enroll 504 basic school children from six communities of the Akyemansa District into study. Structured questionnaires were used to gather information on risk factors. Urine samples were collected and microscopically examined for the presence of Schistosoma haematobium (SH) ova. The observed ova were then quantified as light or heavy.
Results: Prevalence of SH infection among school children in Akyemansa District was 10.32% [95% CI: 7.80 -13.31%]. Out of 52 participants who were infected, 69.2% had light infection whilst the rest had heavy infection. Female participants were less likely to be infected with SH than males [OR=0.47; 95% CI: 0.23-0.97], children who do not stay by the river/stream were also less likely to be infected with SH compared to those who lived near waterbodies [OR=0.35; 95% CI: 0.17-0.72]. Additionally, participants who did not play around water bodies were also less likely to be infected with SH compared to those who did [OR=0.17; 95% CI= 0.04-0.71; p=0.015]. However, inhabitants of Kotokuom were more likely to be infected compared to those in Pawuda [OR=8.54; 95% CI: 1.91-38.27; p=0.005]
Conclusion: The prevalence of urinary schistosomiasis among basic school children in the Akyemansa district was found to be 10.32% [95% CI: 7.80 -13.31%]. Gender, staying around river/ stream, playing at river/ stream and habitation of participants were significantly associated with the prevalence of Schistosoma haematobium infection. The study therefore recommends that periodic drug administration and a comprehensive intervention strategy should be designed and implemented to reduce schistosomiasis prevalence.
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