A nine-month survey was undertaken to determine the proportion of children less than 5 years of age admitted at Don Vicente Sotto Memorial Hospital (SIMC), Cebu City, who were positive for Cryptosporidium oocysts. Risk factors associated with Cryptosporidiosis were also studied. Utilizing faecal concentration technique (formalin ethyl acetate method) and a modified Ziehl-Neelsen Acid fast staining, Cryptosporidium oocysts were identified in faecal samples from 41 (11.4%) of 361 diarrheic pediatric patients and 3 (2.2%) of 136 non-diarrheic pediatric patients with an overall rate of 8.9%. The highest frequency (82.9%) occurred in the diarrheic children less than 18 months old.Based on the interview schedule, data obtained showed that of the 41 diarrheic children positive for Cryptosporidium oocysts, 27 (65.9%) were male, 36 (87.8%) were malnourished, 13 (31.7%) had concurrent infection, 5 (12.2%) utilized untreated and unboiled water, 13 (31.7%) had contact with animals and 16 (39%) did not have any excreta disposal facilities. Of the 39 diarrheic chidren positive for Cryptosporidium oocysts (less than 24 months old), 28 (71.8%) were not breast fed. Higher frequency of Cryptosporidium infection was noted during the months of April, August and September. These data indicate that Cryptosporidium infection is not uncommon potential etiologic agent of diarrhea among children in our locality. (Author)
General Objectives: To determine the prevalence of cryptosporidiosis among children belowe five years of age and identify some risk factors associated with the infection.