|Year : 2018 | Volume
| Issue : 2 | Page : 38-42
Increasing trend of pediculosis (Pediculus Humanus Capitis) in Lamerd, Farashband, and Marvdasht Cities, Southern Iran
Zahra Soltani1, Davood Keshavarzi2
1 Communicable Disease Unit, Faculty of Health, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran
2 Department of Medical Entomology and Vector Control, School of Public Health, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
|Date of Web Publication||29-May-2018|
Dr. Davood Keshavarzi
Department of Medical Entomology and Vector Control, School of Public Health, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran
Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None
Aim: The aim of this study was to report the trend of pediculosis among people in Lamerd, Farashband, and Marvdasht cities, Southern Iran. Materials and Methods: This study was a retrospective study of patients with a definite diagnosis of Pediculus humanus capitis in 2012–2015. Information recorded for each patient included the gender, age, residence, and the season of diagnosis. Results: In Lamerd, Marvdasht, and Farashband, the total numbers of pediculosis cases were 1675, 954, and 509 cases, respectively. In those three cities, the highest number of cases was found in the year 2015 (1568 n) and lowest was in 2012 (431 n). This difference was statistically significant (P < 0.05). In all cities, the number of females (2921 n) was higher than males (217 n) (P < 0.05). The highest prevalence of disease was seen in female children between the ages of 6–12 years (1787 n) while the lowest prevalence was seen in male children <6 years old (8 n). Considering the residence, the majority of cases in Marvdasht (549 n) and Farashband (401 n) were from urban areas, and the difference was statistically significant only in the city of Farashband. In those cities, totally, the highest and lowest number of cases was observed in the autumn and summer, respectively. Conclusions: The results showed that the disease trend is increasing in recent years. Advance in socioeconomic conditions and also implementing health education programs for kids, parents, and sick people may help in controlling this disease.
Keywords: Epidemiology, Fars, Iran, pediculosis
|How to cite this article:|
Soltani Z, Keshavarzi D. Increasing trend of pediculosis (Pediculus Humanus Capitis) in Lamerd, Farashband, and Marvdasht Cities, Southern Iran. Int Arch Health Sci 2018;5:38-42
|How to cite this URL:|
Soltani Z, Keshavarzi D. Increasing trend of pediculosis (Pediculus Humanus Capitis) in Lamerd, Farashband, and Marvdasht Cities, Southern Iran. Int Arch Health Sci [serial online] 2018 [cited 2021 Apr 21];5:38-42. Available from: http://www.iahs.kaums.ac.ir/text.asp?2018/5/2/38/233486
| Introduction|| |
Sucking lice (Phthiraptera: Anoplura) is found as permanent blood-feeding parasites on approximately 20% of all mammalian species. Lice are small, wingless insects and the three kinds of these ectoparasites that infest humans are head lice, body lice, and pubic lice.
Head lice infestation causes a high level of anxiety among parents of children. It is easily spread by direct contact, particularly in crowded environments. The individuals with head lice infestation are susceptible to secondary bacterial infections., Body louse is often found on the persons who are infected by head louse. It can migrate between the different body areas. It causes a severe public health problem as they are vectors of the pathogens Rickettsia prowazekii (causing epidemic typhus) Bartonella quintana (causing trench fever), and Borrelia recurrentis (causing relapsing fever). However, head lice infestation is more common worldwide as a major health problem in poor, developing, and developed countries. Some factors are effective for the head lice prevalence that related to the host such as sex, age group, race, and type of hair. Studies carried out in different parts of the world have reported different prevalence for head lice in children. For example, the rate of infestation has been estimated to be 5.5% in Egypt, 8.9% in Belgium, and 14% in Czech Republic.,, Various reports have been published on the percentage of infestation in Iran.,,,, Lice is an important public health problem in Iran, same as in other countries in the world. For example, 27% of urban primary schools in Iranshahr area (Southeast of Iran) were found infested; also, the head lice infestation in school children of Tabriz City (Northwest of Iran) was 3.64% and the prevalence of head lice was 1% in Fars province., In Khorasan-e-Razavi province, 36.4% infested cases with Pediculus humanus capitis and Pediculus corporis were found in rural and 63.6% in urban areas. In the present study, unlike previous studies that were limited to children, individuals with different age groups were studied.
Actually, the present study was conducted to survey the prevalence of head lice infestation rate in three cities of Fars province in Southwest of Iran in order to complete existing information and previous studies. The information provided in the present paper can help health authorities and researchers for investigating ways to reduce the incidence of disease in cities where the infestation rate is high.
| Materials and Methods|| |
This retrospective study was conducted during 4 years (2012–2015) in Lamerd, Farashband, and Marvdasht cities, Fars Provinces, Southern Iran.
Fars Provinces is located in the southern part of Iran (29.62° N, 52.53° E). The following information was obtained for each patient: age, gender, season of admission, and residence enrolled in the study. The diagnosis was established on the basis of clinical and entomological investigations. A case was considered as being infested by the existence of either live or dead lice or nits. The data were analyzed using SPSS Inc. Released 2008. SPSS Statistics for Windows, Version 17.0. (Chicago: SPSS Inc.). Differences were considered significant at P < 0.05.
| Results|| |
In Lamerd, Marvdasht, and Farashband, the total numbers of pediculosis cases were 1675, 954, and 509 cases, respectively. In those three cities, the highest number of cases was found in the year 2015 (1568 n) and lowest was in 2012 (431 n) [Table 1]. This difference was statistically significant (P< 0.05). In all cities, the number of females (2921 n) was higher than males (217 n) (P< 0.05). The highest prevalence of disease was seen in female children between the ages of 6–12 years (1787 n) while the lowest prevalence was seen in male children < 6 years old (8 n) [Table 1]. Considering the residence, the majority of cases in Marvdasht (549 n) and Farashband (401 n) were from urban areas and the difference was statistically significant only in the city of Farashband. In Lamerd, the number of cases in rural area was slightly higher [Table 1], and this difference was not significant. Totally, the highest and lowest number of cases was observed in the autumn and summer, respectively. In Marvdasht, the infestation was higher in winter (39 n) than autumn (30 n). [Table 2], [Table 3], [Table 4] summarize the details of each city.
|Table 1: Total numbers of head lice infestation according to residence, age, and gender in Lamerd, Marvdasht, and Farashband cities-Fars province, Iran |
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|Table 2: Head lice among individuals according to residence, age, and gender in different seasons, Lamerd city-Fars province, Iran|
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|Table 3: Head lice among individuals according to residence, age, and gender in different seasons, Marvdasht city-Fars province, Iran|
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|Table 4: Head lice among individuals according to residence, age, and gender in different seasons, Farashband city-Fars province, Iran|
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| Discussion|| |
In previous studies in Fars province, the prevalence was reported 0.2% and 0.11% in spring and 0.23% and 0.49% in autumn.,
In Iran, the disease is more common in cold cities. For example, in a study in Sanandaj City, Kurdistan Province, the total prevalence was 4.7% in children, and in other studies in Hamadan and East Azerbaijan, the prevalence was 6.8% and 4.8%, respectively., Therefore, the prevalence is affected by the weather.
The present study shows that the pediculosis was more prevalent in females than males. This report is similar to many previous reports in Iran and other parts of the world.,,, This could be due to that the school girls often formed close groups while talking and playing. Short hair in boys can be another reason because short hair hinder detection of an infestation.
The lice are spread by towels, hats, upholstery, headphones, air movement, and combs. Females can oviposit on a variety of substrates such as denim, human hair, wad, or faux fur. Adult lice are the most mobile than nymph, and they are most likely to initiate new infestations and control measures should emphasis on this stage. Blood-borne factors could affect the ability of lice to increase on some hosts more than others. The frequency of lice infestation in one gender to another is probably more related to social behavior than blood factors.
In accordance with Khokhar, in our study, children in the age group 6–12 years are at the maximum risk for head lice infestation. This could be due to the presence of children in friendly relationships at school. Study on head lice infestation in schoolchildren of Mafraq governorate, Jordan showed a higher infestation rate in younger children (<9 years).
Pediculosis prevalence is affected by a variety of factors such as educational levels of parents, the number of rooms in the house, the number of family members, family income, and health conditions., Higher rates of pediculosis were reported in an urban area in Nigeria, as well as the present study for Marvdasht (549 n) and Farashband (401 n) cities. This may be due to the fact that people living in the city have more access to health centers. The higher rates of head lice infestation in Poland and Turkey were reported in rural areas., In the present study, the number of cases in rural areas was higher than urban areas for Lamerd city. Consideration of control and prevention methods in the above counties is essential. Louse prevention and control methods could include use of a louse comb, because it is more effective than visual inspection for removal, examine all other family members and friends within an infested person's immediate circle of contact, laundering of infested clothes and bedding using the hot water or isolating of such items for ≥ 18 days, and thorough cleaning of car seats, carpets, and upholstered furniture with a standard vacuum cleaner.
| Conclusions|| |
Our study exposed that female children between the ages of 6–12 years are more vulnerable to head lice infestation, and the prevalence of pediculosis is high in both urban and rural areas. The disease trend is increasing in recent years. Hence, improvements in socioeconomic conditions and also implementing health education programs for students' parents and teachers may help in controlling this disease.
The authors gratefully acknowledge the cooperation of Health-Medical Systems of Fars province in executing this study
Financial support and sponsorship
The present study was conducted based on a self-funded basis.
Conflicts of interest
There are no conflicts of interest.
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[Table 1], [Table 2], [Table 3], [Table 4]