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Journal of Parasitology Research
Volume 2014, Article ID 823923, 5 pages
Research Article

Intestinal Helminth Infections in Pregnant Women Attending Antenatal Clinic at Kitale District Hospital, Kenya

1Department of Biological Sciences, Faculty of Science, Egerton University, P.O. Box 536, Njoro 20107, Kenya
2Department of Medical Microbiology and Parasitology, School of Medicine, College of Health Sciences, Moi University, P.O. Box 4606, Eldoret 30100, Kenya
3Department of Veterinary Clinical Services, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine & Surgery, Egerton University, P.O. Box 536, Njoro 20107, Kenya
4Department of Gender Studies, Egerton University, P.O. Box 536, Njoro 20107, Kenya

Received 13 March 2014; Revised 4 May 2014; Accepted 5 May 2014; Published 27 May 2014

Academic Editor: C. Genchi

Copyright © 2014 A. W. Wekesa et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Intestinal helminth infections during pregnancy are associated with adverse outcomes including low birth weight and prenatal mortality. The infections are a major public health problem in developing countries. A hospital based survey was undertaken for six months to determine the infection prevalence, intensity, and risk factors. The study involved expectant women attending antenatal clinic. Stool samples were screened microscopically for helminth ova using Kato Katz technique. Information on risk factors was collected using semistructured questionnaire and analyzed using SPSS. Epidemiological data was analysed using descriptive statistics and multivariate analysis. The overall prevalence of infection was 21 (13.8%). Ascariasis was the most prevalent 10 (6.5%), hookworm infection was 6 (3.9%), and trichuriasis was 2 (1.3%). Pregnant women aged below 29 years (OR = 3.63, CI = 0.87–11.75) and those with primary level of education (OR = 3.21, CI = 0.88–11.75) were at a higher risk of infection compared to those aged ≥ 29 years with secondary level of education. Hand washing was significantly associated with reduced likelihood of infection (OR = 0.18, 95% CI = 0.06–0.57). It was concluded that intestinal helminth infections were prevalent among pregnant women. We recommended that all expectant women visiting antenatal clinics be screened for intestinal helminth infections and positive cases be advised to seek treatment.