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Background High total serum immunoglobulin E (IgE) levels
and eosinophilia are markers for atopy, but other factors may
also play a key role in affecting atopy, such as intestinal parasitic
infection. Helminthiasis has been associated with a reduced risk
of atopy and asthma symptoms in areas with high prevalence of
Objective To assess for associations between total serum IgE
level and soil-transmitted helminthiasis (STH) infection, as well
as between STH infection and allergy symptoms.
Methods We conducted a cross-sectional stu dy on 84
consecutively-enrolled children , aged 7- 13 years, in the
Secanggang Subdistrict, Langkat District, North Sumatera
Province. Subjects were enrolled into one of two groups, with or
without STH infection. Total serum IgE measurements and stool
STH examinations were performed in all subjects. Data on atopy
or allergy symptoms were obtained by parental interview.
Results The 42 subjects with STH infection had significantly
higher mean total serum lg E levels than the 42 subjects without
infec tion, 1,13 1.26 IU/mL and 744.76 IU/mL, respectiv ely
(P = 0.029). We also fo und significant positive association s
between STH infection and asthma symptoms (P= 0.049), as well
as eczema symptoms (P=0.044).
Conclusion Mean total serum IgE level is higher in STHinfected
subjects than in those without infection. In addition,
STH infection is positively associated with asthma and eczema
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