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Memórias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz

Print version ISSN 0074-0276

Abstract

CARVALHO, Gabriel Costa de et al. Polymerase chain reaction for the evaluation of Schistosoma mansoni infection in two low endemicity areas of Minas Gerais, Brazil. Mem. Inst. Oswaldo Cruz [online]. 2012, vol.107, n.7, pp. 899-902. ISSN 0074-0276.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0074-02762012000700010.

This study aimed to evaluate the occurrence of schistosomiasis in areas with low endemicity using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) as a diagnostic method. We analysed faecal samples from 219 individuals residing in Piau and Coronel Pacheco, state of Minas Gerais, Brazil, using a single faecal sample from each individual and two slides of the Kato-Katz technique as a gold standard. Fifteen out of the 219 samples were positive with both methods of diagnosis. One sample was diagnosed as positive by the Kato-Katz technique only and 61 were diagnosed only by PCR. The positivity rates were 7.3% with the Kato-Katz method and 34.7% with PCR. When both techniques were assumed to have 100% specificity and positive individuals were identified by both methods, the sensitivity of the Kato-Katz method was 20.8% and the PCR sensitivity was 98.7%. The Kappa index between the two techniques was 0.234, suggesting weak agreement. The assessment of a single faecal sample by PCR detected more cases of infection than the analysis of one sample with two slides using the Kato-Katz technique, suggesting that PCR can be a useful diagnostic tool, particularly in areas with low endemicity.

Keywords : schistosomiasis; Kato-Katz; PCR; diagnosis; low endemicity.

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