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Iran J Pediatr. 2010 Sep;20(3):343-7.

Infection Rate of Cryptosporidium parvum among Diarrheic Children in Isfahan.

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Department of Pediatrics, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran.



Cryptosporidiosis is an important enteric parasitic infection among infants and children in developing countries with significant morbidity and mortality especially among immuno-suppressed individuals. The aim of the present study was to estimate the prevalence of enteric cryptosporidiosis in children presenting with diarrhea in Isfahan.


This cross-sectional study was conducted from August 2007 to June 2008 in three university hospitals in Isfahan. Children aged 1 month to 10 years presenting with acute or persistent diarrhea were selected consecutively. The oocyst of C. parvum was investigated in stool specimens using a modified acid-fast staining method.


During the study period, 606 children (mean age 42.4±30.0 months, 58.1% female) were recruited. Acute and persistent diarrhea was present in 422 (69.6%) and 184 (30.4%) of the children, respectively. Twenty eight (4.6%) specimens were oocyst positive. The prevalence of Cryptosporidium infection was significantly higher in children with persistent diarrhea compared to children with acute diarrhea (12.5% vs 1.2%; P<0.001). Most of the infected children were under 5 years of age (89.2%), however, the age difference between infected and non-infected children was not statistically significant. Also, there was no significant difference between infected and non-infected children in gender.


The prevalence of Cryptosporidiosis in children presenting with persistent diarrhea is considerable and we suggest routine stool examination for Cryptosporidium in this group of children.


Cryptosporidiosis; Cryptosporidium parvum; Diarrhea; Gastroenteritis; Prevalence


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