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Scabies among primary schoolchildren in Egypt: sociomedical environmental study in Kafr El-Sheikh administrative area

Authors Hegab D, Kato A, Kabbash I, Dabish G

Received 27 November 2014

Accepted for publication 29 December 2014

Published 24 February 2015 Volume 2015:8 Pages 105—111


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Jeffrey Weinberg

Doaa Salah Hegab,1 Abdullah Mahfouz Kato,1 Ibrahim Ali Kabbash,2 Ghada Maged Dabish3

1Department of Dermatology and Venereology, Faculty of Medicine, 2Department of Public Health and Community, Faculty of Medicine, 3Faculty of Medicine, Tanta University, Tanta, Egypt

Background/objectives: Scabies is a major global public health issue that might affect people from all socioeconomic levels. The primary contributing factors in contracting scabies seem to be poverty and overcrowded living conditions. Scabies often spreads among schoolchildren quite rapidly, owing to their close contact and overcrowding within the schools. However, limited information is available about its risk factors and the socioeconomic correlates among schoolchildren in Egypt. This study aimed to assess the prevalence of scabies and its risk factors among primary schoolchildren in Kafr El-Sheikh administrative area, Egypt.
Methods: This cross-sectional descriptive study was performed on primary schoolchildren in urban and rural areas of Kafr El-Sheikh administrative area. A predesigned questionnaire was used for data collection from the randomly selected 2,104 children, and clinical dermatological examination was done for them.
Results: Out of 2,104 children studied, there were 92 cases of scabies with a prevalence of 4.4%. The prevalence of scabies infestation in male students was 3.9%, while it was 4.8% in females, with no statistical significance. The results showed significant variations in the risk of scabies infestation by factors such as residence, paternal education and occupation, maternal education, sleeping with others, having animals at home, dealing with animals outside the house, type of building for living, family history of itchy rash, and sharing clothes with others.
Conclusion: In our community, scabies is still an important health problem affecting schoolchildren, especially in rural areas. It is characterized by a complex web of causation, particularly poor living conditions and low level of parents’ education.

Keywords: child, prevalence, risk factors, scabies, social conditions

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