Prevalence of and risk factors for intestinal parasite infections in pediatric patients admitted to public hospitals in Southern Brazil

<div><p>Abstract INTRODUCTION: This study aimed to evaluate the prevalence of intestinal parasitosis and to identify risk factors associated therewith in hospitalized children. METHODS: Three fecal samples from each patient were evaluated using three different techniques. The patients’ nutritional and socioeconomic status and hematologic profiles were evaluated. RESULTS: Of 106 children, 32.1% tested positive for intestinal parasitosis. The associated risk factors were low parental education levels and children's nail-biting habit. Eosinophilia, observed in 15 cases, was not associated with parasitosis. CONCLUSIONS: We recommend routine fecal parasitologic examination for hospitalized children and implementation of educational campaigns on the prevention of these diseases.</p></div>