Prevalence and risk factors of cryptosporidiosis among HIV/AIDS patients presenting with diarrhea at Nakasongola Health Centre IV, Nakasongola District, Uganda
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Cryptosporidium is one of the most common diarrhea-causing parasitic genera in the world. It is one pathogen, which in immunocompromised HIV-positive individuals can cause chronic diarrhea. This study was aimed at determining the prevalence of cryptosporidiosis and its associated risk factors among HIV/AIDS patients presenting with diarrhea at Nakasongola Health Center IV. A cross sectional study was performed and 150 HIV/AIDS patients were recruited from January to March 2019. Stool samples were collected from study participants, wet saline preparations made and examined, stool samples concentrated using formal ether Neelsen technique. Structured questionnaires were used to collect demographic data and hygienic malpractices that predisposed study participants to cryptosporidiosis infection. Of the 150 participants, there were 66% females and 34% males. Majority (88.7%) were above 18 years of age. Regarding education level, the highest percentage 52.7% had not attained formal education. Majority (68%) of the participants were married. The overall prevalence of cryptosporidium was 18.7% (28/150). On multivariate analysis, a statistically significant association was found between the prevalence of cryptosporidiosis and mode of waste disposal (P=0.005) , keeping of animals (p=0.00) source of water (p=0.001). A higher prevalence of cryptosporidiosis, 35.3% (12/34) was obtained among participants who did not use toilets as compared to 13.8% (16/116) prevalence found among those who used toilets. Similarly, this study included most participants who did not keep animals 82/150 (54.7%), however a 30.9% (21/68) prevalence was recorded among participants who used to keep animals as compared to 8.5% (7/82) prevalence recorded among those that did not keep animals. There was no significant association (P>0.05) between occupation, age, sex, marital status and education with prevalence of cryptosporidium at 0.05 level of significance. The prevalence reported in this study is high as compared to many different studies. Therefore use of toilets, sensitization to the mass and provision of clean drinking water within the community may reduce the spread of cryptosporidium infections.