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PLoS One. 2017 Dec 19;12(12):e0189709. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0189709. eCollection 2017.

Toxoplasmosis - Awareness and knowledge among medical doctors in Nigeria.

Author information

1
Department of Medical Microbiology, Ebonyi State University and Federal Teaching Hospital, Abakaliki, Nigeria.
2
Department of Medical Microbiology & Parasitology, Ben Carson School of Medicine, Babcock University/Babcock University Teaching Hospital, Ilisan-Remo, Ogun State, Nigeria.
3
University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland.
4
Estonian University of Life Sciences, Tartu, Estonia.
5
Statens Serum Institut, Copenhagen, Denmark.

Abstract

Toxoplasma gondii is a zoonotic parasite causing high disease burden worldwide. A One Health approach is needed to understand, prevent, and control toxoplasmosis, while knowledge gaps in the One Health aspects have been identified among medical professionals in earlier studies. As a One Health collaboration between veterinary and medical fields, we surveyed the knowledge on toxoplasmosis among medical doctors in Nigeria. The knowledge questions, which the participants answered without consulting literature and colleagues, covered epidemiological One Health aspects as well as clinical interspecialty aspects of T. gondii infections. Altogether 522 medical doctors from four tertiary hospitals completed the questionnaire. The mean number of correct answers in the knowledge questions was 7.5, and 8.4% of the participants selected at least 12 of the 17 correct answers. The proportion of medical doctors scoring such a high score was significantly higher among those who reported having seen a case of clinical toxoplasmosis than in those who did not. While 62% of the medical doctors participating in our study knew that cats can shed T. gondii in their feces, 36% incorrectly suggested that humans could do that too. That T. gondii infection can be meatborne was known by 69%, but that it can be also waterborne only by 28% of the medical doctors participating in our study. Most of the medical doctors, 78%, knew that clinical toxoplasmosis may involve the central nervous system, while only 37% answered that it can involve the eyes. Our results suggested knowledge gaps, which need to be addressed in Continuous Medical Education. The identified gaps included both intersectoral One Health aspects and interspecialty aspects: For prevention and management of toxoplasmosis, knowing the main transmission routes and that the parasite can affect several organs is relevant.

PMID:
29261738
PMCID:
PMC5736225
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0189709
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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