Seropositivity and awareness of Toxoplasmosis among University students
Keywords:Toxoplasma gondii, Awareness, Prevalence, Jeddah
Toxoplasma gondii is an obligate intracellular parasite that is infecting about one-third of the world population. Awareness about toxoplasmosis and its transmission can help reduce its prevalence. We examined the degree of awareness about toxoplasmosis among female university students. A total of 127 samples were collected, including 44 samples from health colleges students and 83 samples from other colleges. A questionnaire was used to measure the level of awareness about Toxoplasma gondii. Serum samples were analyzed for the presence of anti-Toxoplasma gondii antibody using ELISA technique. Ninety-four (74%) participants were 18-20 years, 27 (21%) were 21-24 years, and 6 (5%) were above 24 years. Only 11 (9%) students eat raw meat and 21 (17%) students had a tendency to eat undercooked meat. Furthermore, only 6 (5%) students received blood transfusion and 33 (26%) students owned a cat at home. Forty-two (33%) students answered that they know about the disease. The majority of participants (n=121, 95%) used bottled water as a source of drinking water. Among the 127 samples collected, only 6 (4.7%) had IgG anti-Toxoplasma gondii antibody. There was statistically significant positive correlation between the level of awareness about toxoplasmosis and the participant's answers about previous knowledge about the disease and a statistically significant negative correlation between the level of awareness about toxoplasmosis and the student's faculty. We recommend that this study is repeated with a larger sample size and a modified questionnaire to include more detailed questions to reveal the true level of awareness.
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