Folia Parasitologica, vol. 62 (2015)

Folia Parasitologica 62:065 (2015) | 10.14411/fp.2015.065

Evaluating the role of intestinal parasites in the high rates of irritable bowel syndrome in South America: a pilot study

George Vasquez-Rios1,2, Jorge D. Machicado2,3, Maria T. Gamero1, Adriana Pezua1, Angel B. Betancourt1, Angelica Terashima1,2, Luis A. Marcos2,4
1 Facultad de Medicina, Alberto Hurtado, Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, Lima, Peru;
2 Instituto de Medicina Tropical Alexander von Humboldt, Hospital Nacional Cayetano Heredia, Lima, Peru;
3 Division of Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Pittsburgh, PA, USA;
4 Department of Medicine and Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, New York, USA

There is limited data on the role of intestinal parasites in irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) in South America. We evaluated the association between intestinal parasitism and IBS status in Peru. Intestinal parasites were detected in 43% of the IBS cases and in 51% of the controls (P = 0.4). After excluding those infected by any parasite, the IBS prevalence remained high (22%; P = 0.7). No statistically significant difference was noted between IBS cases and controls in terms of monoparasitism, biparasitism or multiparasitism. Furthermore, the protist Blastocystis sp. was inversely associated with IBS.

Keywords: soil-transmitted helminths, Blastocystis sp., functional gastrointestinal diseases

Received: September 11, 2015; Accepted: October 12, 2015; Published online: December 11, 2015


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