Cryptosporidiosis: a neglected infection and its association with nutritional status in schoolchildren in northwestern Mexico

  • Luis Quihui-Cota Coordinación de Nutrición, Centro de Investigación en Alimentación y Desarrollo, Hermosillo Sonora, México
  • Carmen M Lugo-Flores Coordinación de Nutrición, Centro de Investigación en Alimentación y Desarrollo, Hermosillo Sonora, México
  • Jose A Ponce-Martínez Coordinación de Nutrición, Centro de Investigación en Alimentación y Desarrollo, Hermosillo Sonora, México
  • Gloria G Morales-Figueroa Coordinación de Nutrición, Centro de Investigación en Alimentación y Desarrollo, Hermosillo Sonora, México

Abstract

Introduction: Undernutrition is a recognized public health problem in Mexican children and cryptosporidiosis is probably a factor contributing to this problem. However, it remains a neglected and poorly attended infection in Mexico. This study aimed to determine the prevalence of Cryptosporidium parvum and to establish its association with the nutritional status in schoolchildren of northwestern Mexico.

Methodology: A total of 405 schoolchildren between 6 and 13 years of age were included in this study. Weight-for-age (W/A), height-for-age (H/A) and body mass index-for-age (BMI/A) Z scores were calculated. The Faust technique was used to detect intestinal parasites in stool samples and C. parvum coproantigen was detected by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA).

Results: The overall prevalence of C. parvum was 28.4%. Some of the study children were C. parvum free (n = 86) and some were C. parvum infected (n = 77). The prevalences of risk of undernutrition found in both groups of children for H/A, W/A, and BMI/A Z scores were 18%, 21% and 28%, respectively. Weight, ZW/A, and ZH/A were significantly higher in the C. parvum-free group compared to the C. parvum-infected group (p ≤ 0.05). The children with cryptosporidiosis were 2.7 times more likely to be at risk of undernutrition by W/A Z score and 2.9 times more likely to be at risk of undernutrition by ZH/A than were the C. parvum-free children.

Conclusions: Cryptosporidiosis may be a contributing factor to childhood undernutrition in northwestern Mexico. The proper authorities must implement control and prevention measurements in Mexico and other developing countries.

Author Biographies

Luis Quihui-Cota, Coordinación de Nutrición, Centro de Investigación en Alimentación y Desarrollo, Hermosillo Sonora, México
Department of Public Nutrition and Health.
Carmen M Lugo-Flores, Coordinación de Nutrición, Centro de Investigación en Alimentación y Desarrollo, Hermosillo Sonora, México
Department of Public Nutrition and Health.
Jose A Ponce-Martínez, Coordinación de Nutrición, Centro de Investigación en Alimentación y Desarrollo, Hermosillo Sonora, México
Department of Public Nutrition and Health.
Gloria G Morales-Figueroa, Coordinación de Nutrición, Centro de Investigación en Alimentación y Desarrollo, Hermosillo Sonora, México
Department of Public Nutrition and Health.
Published
2015-08-29
How to Cite
Quihui-Cota L, Lugo-Flores C, Ponce-Martínez J, Morales-Figueroa G (2015) Cryptosporidiosis: a neglected infection and its association with nutritional status in schoolchildren in northwestern Mexico. The Journal Of Infection In Developing Countries 9 (08): 878-883. https://doi.org/10.3855/jidc.6751
Section
Original Articles

Keywords

C. parvum; undernutrition; schoolchildren; Mexico