Undiagnosed and potentially lethal parasite infections among immigrants and refugees in Australia
AuthorCaruana, SR; Kelly, HA; Ngeow, JYY; Ryan, NJ; Bennett, CM; Chea, L; Nuon, S; Bak, N; Skull, SA; Biggs, B-A
Source TitleJournal of Travel Medicine
PublisherOXFORD UNIV PRESS INC
University of Melbourne Author/sBennett, Catherine; SKULL, SUSAN; Biggs, Beverley-Ann; Caruana, Sonia; BAK, NARIN
AffiliationMedicine - Royal Melbourne And Western Hospitals
Document TypeJournal Article
CitationsCaruana, S. R., Kelly, H. A., Ngeow, J. Y. Y., Ryan, N. J., Bennett, C. M., Chea, L., Nuon, S., Bak, N., Skull, S. A. & Biggs, B. -A. (2006). Undiagnosed and potentially lethal parasite infections among immigrants and refugees in Australia. JOURNAL OF TRAVEL MEDICINE, 13 (4), pp.233-239. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1708-8305.2006.00045.x.
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C1 - Journal Articles Refereed
Intestinal parasite infections are a major cause of ill health in many resource-poor countries. This study compares the types and rates of these infections and their risk factors in recently arrived and long-term immigrants in Australia. Cross-sectional surveys of 127 East African and 234 Cambodian immigrants and refugees were undertaken in 2000 and 2002, respectively, to assess the burden of intestinal parasites and collect demographic information. Serum samples were assessed for eosinophilia and Strongyloides stercoralis and Schistosoma antibodies, and feces examined for ova, cysts, and parasites. Intestinal parasites were identified in 77/117 fecal samples from East African and in 25/204 samples collected from Cambodian participants. Eleven percent (14/124) of East Africans and 42% (97/230) of Cambodians had positive or equivocal serology for S stercoralis. Schistosoma serology was positive or equivocal in 15% (19/124) of East African participants. Potentially serious intestinal parasite infections are common among recent and longer term immigrants despite multiple visits to health care providers. Immigrants and refugees from high-risk countries would benefit from comprehensive health checks soon after resettlement.
KeywordsMedical Parasitology ; Infectious Diseases; Infectious Diseases; Health Related to Specific Ethnic Groups
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