Immuno-hematological profile of individuals with podoconiosis in Yilmana Densa Woreda, West Gojjam, Ethiopia

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Addis Ababa Universty


Background: Podoconiosis is non-filarial elephantiasis, is suggested as an inflammatory disease caused by prolonged contact with irritant soil. It is prevalent in tropical Africa, including Ethiopia.. However, little is known about the immuno-hematological changes in this disease. Objective: To assess the immuno-hematological profiles of individuals with podoconiosis (Podo) in Yilmana Densa woreda, West Gojjam. Method: A case-control study was conducted from August 29, 2017-June 15, 2018 on 120 adults (53 Podo cases and 67 controls). Socio-demographic variables and associated factors for podoconiosis were collected. Stool and blood samples were analyzed for parasite identification, hematological parameters and cytokines levels. Data were entered and analyzed using SPSS 20. Results: Of the cases, 64.2% (n=53) and of the controls 67.2% (n=67) were males. Age, length of years of residence in the kebele and educational status had significant association with podoconiosis (P<0.05). Most of the cases had blood type A and B whereas controls had A and O (p>0.05). Significantly less number of cases than controls had washed their legs daily (60.4% vs 71.6%, p=0.014) and had worn shoes (88.7% versus 98.5%, p=0.023). However, less than half (45.3%) of the cases and 82.1% of the controls were wearing shoes during interview (p<0.01). Age at first leg swelling (22.6years) was less than at first shoe wearing (27.1 years). Cases had significantly lower mean WBC, GRAN, RBC, HGB, MCH, MCHC and higher mean LYMP and mixed cell population (MID) counts than controls (p<0.01). The mean CD4 count and percent, level of cytokines (IL-4, IL-6, IL-10,IL-17, IFNᵞ) of cases were not significantly different from controls (p>0.05). 37.74% of the cases and 32.84 % of the controls (p=0.576) were positive for intestinal parasites. Hookworm was the most prevalent intestinal parasite in both groups. The mean HGB level of Hook worm positive podo cases and Hook worm negative podo cases was 11.69g/dl and 12.21g/dl respectively,(F=0.061,p=0.805). Conclusion: Remarkable increase in MID and lymphocyte counts (%) but decrease in granulocyte counts (%), HGB, MCH and MCHC were seen in Podo cases. Appropriate interventions are needed to prevent multiple burdens in Podo patients and intestinal parasites in controls.



Podoconiosis, CBC, Cytokines, CD4, STH