Morbidity in Relation to Intensity of Infection in Opisthorchiasis Viverrini: Study of A Community in Khon Kaen, Thailand

E. S. UpathamDepartment of Biology, Faculty of Science, Department of Medicine, Ramathibodi Faculty of Medicine, Department of Helminthology, Faculty of Tropical Medicine, Mahidol University, Ban Phai Hospital, Departments of Medicine and Community Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Khon Kaen University, Division of Health Sciences, The Rockefeller Foundation, Bangkok 4, Thailand

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V. ViyanantDepartment of Biology, Faculty of Science, Department of Medicine, Ramathibodi Faculty of Medicine, Department of Helminthology, Faculty of Tropical Medicine, Mahidol University, Ban Phai Hospital, Departments of Medicine and Community Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Khon Kaen University, Division of Health Sciences, The Rockefeller Foundation, Bangkok 4, Thailand

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S. KurathongDepartment of Biology, Faculty of Science, Department of Medicine, Ramathibodi Faculty of Medicine, Department of Helminthology, Faculty of Tropical Medicine, Mahidol University, Ban Phai Hospital, Departments of Medicine and Community Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Khon Kaen University, Division of Health Sciences, The Rockefeller Foundation, Bangkok 4, Thailand

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W. Y. BrockelmanDepartment of Biology, Faculty of Science, Department of Medicine, Ramathibodi Faculty of Medicine, Department of Helminthology, Faculty of Tropical Medicine, Mahidol University, Ban Phai Hospital, Departments of Medicine and Community Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Khon Kaen University, Division of Health Sciences, The Rockefeller Foundation, Bangkok 4, Thailand

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A. MenaruchiDepartment of Biology, Faculty of Science, Department of Medicine, Ramathibodi Faculty of Medicine, Department of Helminthology, Faculty of Tropical Medicine, Mahidol University, Ban Phai Hospital, Departments of Medicine and Community Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Khon Kaen University, Division of Health Sciences, The Rockefeller Foundation, Bangkok 4, Thailand

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S. SaowakonthaDepartment of Biology, Faculty of Science, Department of Medicine, Ramathibodi Faculty of Medicine, Department of Helminthology, Faculty of Tropical Medicine, Mahidol University, Ban Phai Hospital, Departments of Medicine and Community Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Khon Kaen University, Division of Health Sciences, The Rockefeller Foundation, Bangkok 4, Thailand

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C. IntarakhaoDepartment of Biology, Faculty of Science, Department of Medicine, Ramathibodi Faculty of Medicine, Department of Helminthology, Faculty of Tropical Medicine, Mahidol University, Ban Phai Hospital, Departments of Medicine and Community Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Khon Kaen University, Division of Health Sciences, The Rockefeller Foundation, Bangkok 4, Thailand

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S. VajrasthiraDepartment of Biology, Faculty of Science, Department of Medicine, Ramathibodi Faculty of Medicine, Department of Helminthology, Faculty of Tropical Medicine, Mahidol University, Ban Phai Hospital, Departments of Medicine and Community Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Khon Kaen University, Division of Health Sciences, The Rockefeller Foundation, Bangkok 4, Thailand

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K. S. WarrenDepartment of Biology, Faculty of Science, Department of Medicine, Ramathibodi Faculty of Medicine, Department of Helminthology, Faculty of Tropical Medicine, Mahidol University, Ban Phai Hospital, Departments of Medicine and Community Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Khon Kaen University, Division of Health Sciences, The Rockefeller Foundation, Bangkok 4, Thailand

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Abstract. A study of the prevalence and intensity of opisthorchiasis viverrini in relation to morbidity as determined by standard medical examination was carried out in Nong Ranya, a small village containing 309 people in northeastern Thailand. Opisthorchis viverrini infection as determined by Stoll's quantitative egg count method had an overall prevalence of 94% and reached 100% prevalence in most age groups above the age of 10 years. With respect to intensity, 6% were uninfected, 26% had light (≤1 eggs per mg [epmg] of feces), 37% moderate (>1–10 epmg), 25% heavy (>10–50 epmg), and 5% very heavy (>50 epmg) infections. Peak intensity in both males and females occurred at age 40 and above. A history of eating “koipla” (a sauce consisting of groundup raw fish), of feeling weak, and of having right upper quadrant abdominal pains occurred most frequently in the infected groups and was correlated with intensity of infection. Regardless of intensity of infection, only a small proportion of the population were unable to carry out their routine activities. Anorexia, nausea or vomiting bore little relationship to the presence or intensity of infection. Hepatomegaly at the midclavicular line occurred in 14% of the population, mainly in the more heavily infected groups. Neither jaundice nor splenomegaly was observed in the population.

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