Volume 51, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



The relationship of soil-transmitted nematode infections to the availability of latrines was studied among 1,614 children 3–12 years of age living on plantations in Sri Lanka. The majority (89.7%) of the children had at least one type of soil-transmitted nematode. There was a significantly lower mean count of hookworm eggs for children coming from plantations with good sanitary facilities. For and , a similar association was observed between the mean egg count and the availability of latrines for children from the low-country plantations, where people live in more scattered settlements, but not in the up-country area, where worker settlements are larger and more crowded. Congested living conditions in themselves consequently seem to be a major determinant for ascariasis and trichuriasis, and the provision of latrines and safe water does not substantially change that situation. However, improvements of sanitary facilities will probably have a more immediate effect on the prevalence of hookworm infection.


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