Shahnaz Abdulkader Ali*
Hersh Ahmad Ameen**
*Department of Microbiology, School of Medicine, Faculty of Medical sciences, University of Sulaimani.
**Department of Microbiology, School of Medicine, Faculty of Medical sciences, University of Sulaimani
PREVALENCE OF HUMAN INTESTINAL PARASITES IN SELECTED VEGETABLES IN SULAIMANI CITY
Fresh vegetables are considered as an important part of healthy diet. In recent years, there has been an increase in number of reported cases of food borne illness linked to consuming fresh vegetables. Several surveys in different parts of the world showed that the vegetables can be agents for transmissions of protozoan cysts, oocysts and helminthes ova and larvae.
The aim of present study is to evaluate the prevalence of intestinal parasites such as ova, larvae, cysts, and oocysts in vegetables sold commercially in greengrocers in Sulaimani city which are consumed raw.
A total of 239 samples of five different vegetable types such as leek, celery, cress, green onion, lettuce were obtained from different markets. The collected plants were then examined for helminthes stages, protozoan cysts, and oocysts of intestinal parasites using centrifugation method and Baermann technique.
Out of 239 samples, 119(49.79%) were positive for parasitic stages, the highest percentage of contamination was detected in leek (64.17%) followed by celery (51.61%), cress (48.1%), lettuce 11(33.33%), and Green onion (32%). The results show that vegetables were positive for different species of parasites; the most prevalent were the cysts of Entamoeba histolytica (14.66%), Rhabditiform larvae (12.44%), ova of Ascaris lumbricoides (12%), Entamoeba coli (12%), Taenia spp. (10%), while the lowest prevalent were ova of Ancylostoma spp. (0.88%), Oesophagostomum spp. (0.88%), and Protostrongylus spp. (0.44%). There was significant difference between prevalence of parasitic organisms among the vegetables.
The results show that vegetables could be a potential source of parasitic infection.
Keywords: Vegetables, Intestinal parasites, Epidemiology, Markets, Sulaimani, Iraq.