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DIAGNOSIS OF URINARY SCHISTOSOMIASIS: A NOVEL APPROACH TO COMPARE BLADDER PATHOLOGY MEASURED BY ULTRASOUND AND THREE METHODS FOR HEMATURIA DETECTION

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  • 1 Department of Public Health, Erasmus Medical Center, University Medical Center Rotterdam, Rotterdam, The Netherlands

We aggregated published data from field studies documenting prevalence of Schistosoma haematobium infection and bladder pathology determined by ultrasonography or hematuria detected by reagent strip, questionnaire, or visual examination. A mathematical expression was used to describe the associations between prevalence of pathology/morbidity and infection. This allows for indirect comparison of these methods, which are rarely used simultaneously. All four methods showed a similar, marked association with infection. Surprisingly, ultrasound revealed higher prevalences of pathology in schools than in communities with the same prevalence of infection, implying a need for age-related cut-off values. Reagent strip testing yielded a higher prevalence than questionnaire, which in turn was higher than by visual examination. After correction for morbidity due to other causes, a consistent ratio in prevalence of hematuria of 3:2:1 resulted for the three respective methods. The simple questionnaire approach is not markedly inferior to the other techniques, making it the best option for field use.

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