Publications of Vector Control Center
Shanthi, Ananthakrishnan, and P.K Das.
Summary

Geohelminths is an important public health problem in developing countries like India. It is an important cause of morbidity in school age children who harbour the highest intensity of worm infestation. Some of the significant morbidity attributed to intestinal helminthiasis is malnutrition, growth retardation, anemia, vitamin A deficiency and impaired intellectual performance. School based targeted chemotherapy of school age children has been recommended as a cost effective and feasible control programme for control of geohelminths. Constraints on the available resources create the need for integration of geohelminth control program with other existing national health programs such as mid day meal, anemia prophylaxis and filaria control programs. The availability of drugs such as diethyl carbamazine (DEC) and albendazole, which have anthelmintic and antifilarial activities, opens the possibility of integrating geohelminth control program with filaria control program. However, co-administration of DEC and albendazole raises several issues like frequency of administration, efficacy, compliance and cost-effectiveness, which have to be looked into. In this context, integrating geohelminth control program with the existing midday meal or anemia prophylaxis program would perhaps be the most appropriate and cost-effective strategy to control geohelminths, alleviate the morbidity caused by them and improve the overall health of the community in general and school age children in particular.

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Last Updated on:06/05/2014