Estudo epidemiológico das parasitoses oculares na população de escolares da cidade de Natal-RN, Brasil

by de Amorim, Carlos Alexandre

Abstract (Summary)
The objective of this study is to estimate the prevalence of Ocular Toxocariasis, Diffuse Unilateral Subacute Neuroretinitis (DUSN), Toxoplasma gondii infection and Ocular Toxoplasmosis in a student population in Natal-RN/Brazil and relate it to demographic, epidemiologic and socio-economic risk factors. The incidence of DUSN was observed in patients at the Federal University of Rio Grande do Norte Ophthalmology Service and the Prontoclinica de Olhos Ophthalmology clinic in Natal. In cases where a worm was found in the subretinal space, the result of treatment with photocoagulation using Green Laser (Eye Light ALCON) was evaluated in relation to final visual result. The sample was randomly selected among the schools of the four districts of Natal, according to the type of institution (public or private), its level (elementary or secondary), and study period (morning, afternoon or evening). The school population was studied from March to May, 2001. Initially, the students answered a questionnaire to evaluate demographic, epidemiologic and socio-economic risk factors. Afterwards, the following procedures were carried out: blood samples were taken for Toxoplasmosis (IgG, IgM) serology, hemogram, ophthalmological examination, consisting of clinical history, measurement of visual acuity, refraction under cycloplegia, biomicroscopy of the anterior segment and annexa, funduscopy and examination of extrinsic motility. The prevalence of Toxocariasis was 0.2% or 2 per one thousand students. The sample was insufficient to estimate the prevalence of DUSN. Seventy patients with DUSN diagnosis were examined from January, 2001 to January, 2003. A live worm was found in the subretinal space of all four patients in the acute phase, and these were treated with laser photocoagulation. After follow-up (average = 11.5 months), visual acuity improved in three eyes and remained unaltered in one eye. Worms were found in 22 of the 66 patients in the chronic phase, and these also were treated with laser photocoagulation. After a follow-up period of 13.1 months, on average, visual acuity improved in two of the patients, remained unchanged in 19 and worsened in one. The comparison of visual result before and after treatment was not statistically significant (p = 0.302). The diagnosis of DUSN in the acute phase, followed by prompt localization and destruction of the worm by photocoagulation, can improve the patient?s vision. However, destruction of the worm by laser photocoagulation in eyes with DUSN in the chronic phase does not improve visual acuity. Seroprevalence for IgG was 46% (Confidence Interval ? CI 95%-42.9-49.2%) and for IgM it was 1.4% (CI 95% = 0.8-2.4%). The prevalence of ocular lesion was 1.15% (CI 95% = 0.6 - 2.0%). Socio-economic conditions were determinants in the prevalence of Systemic and Ocular Toxoplasmosis in the bivaried analysis and confirmed in the multivaried analysis (mother?s scholarity ? illiterate/ OR = 2.9 and p < 0.001). The T. gondii infection prevalence, although high, was less than that found in studies performed in the South and Southeast of Brazil and that of Ocular Toxoplasmosis was completely discrepant, varying from 5 to 17 times less. Although important epidemiological variables such as owning a cat, drinking unfiltered water, and coming into contact with rivers or lakes showed an association in the preliminary analysis, they lost their influence when included in the logistic model. Future studies are scheduled to begin in March, 2004, in collaboration with other Brazilian and American universities in an attempt to discover the reason for these findings, as well as identifying the different strains of Toxoplasma gondii, and studying the sources of water utilized by the population of Natal ? Brazil
This document abstract is also available in Portuguese.
Bibliographical Information:

Advisor:Aldo da Cunha Medeiros; Selma Maria Bezerra Jerônimo; Fernando Oréfice

School:Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte

School Location:Brazil

Source Type:Master's Thesis

Keywords:Toxocaríase Toxocariasis Ocular Prevalence of toxoplasmosis Risk factors


Date of Publication:02/19/2004

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