Saudi Journal of Gastroenterology
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Year : 2007  |  Volume : 13  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 129-132

Epidemiology of Shigella-associated diarrhea in Gorgan, north of Iran

1 Department of Microbiology, Golestan University of Medical Sciences, Iran
2 Pasteur Institute of Tehran, Iran

Correspondence Address:
Ezzat Ollah Ghaemi
Department of Microbiology, Golestan University of Medical Sciences, Gorgan
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/1319-3767.33464

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Objective : Shigella is an important etiological agent for diarrhea and especially dysentery. Shigellosis is an intestinal infection that is a major public health problem in many developing countries. The aim of this study was to evaluate the prevalence of Shigella and its various species in diarrheal samples in Gorgan located in the north of Iran. Materials and Methods: Between January-December 2005, the epidemiology of Shigella- associated diarrhea was studied among 634 patients in Gorgan. The diarrheal samples accompanied with a questionnaire, which contained the demographic and main symptoms of the patients, were transported to the laboratory and inoculated in different culture media. Colonies suspected to be of Shigella were detected using differential biochemical tests and subsequently, the serotype of Shigella was defined using antisera. Results : Shigella was isolated from 56/634 diarrheal samples) (8.8%) of which S. sonnei was the predominant species (55%). Occurrence of Schigella was highest in the 2-5 years' age group (70.9%) and highest in summer (73.2%) with the most frequent clinical manifestation being abdominal pain (67.8%). The prevalence of Shigella in males and females was 8 and 9.8% respectively, but this difference was not statistically significant. Conclusion: It has been shown that Shigella sonnei is the most common Shigella serogroup among 2-5 year-old children in Gorgan. It is therefore suggested that hygienic training be given to childcare attendants and the children themselves.

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