Trichomoniasis is a common clinical problem. Many young women in Aba indulge in high-risk sexual behaviours. A large number of these young women are illiterates, and are in the habit of indiscriminate use of antibacterial agents at the slightest symptoms of a lower genital tract infection. Evaluation of bacterial agents associated with lower genital tract infections is therefore met with much frustration. The diagnosis of Trichomoniasis from lower genital tract is simple and its routine screening among women attending clinics would serve as an indicator for serious sexually transmitted infections in Aba.
This study was undertaken among women attending a women hospital in Aba, Abia State, Nigeria (PrincessMaryHospital, Aba). In the study, 360 women who were attending the family and antenatal clinics were selected. Also, those with gynaecological problems, obvious symptoms of lower genital tract infections and those who visited the hospital for "well women examination" were included in the study population. High vaginal swabs collected from these women were examined microscopically by wet mount preparations and bacteriologically by cultures.
Out of 360 women screened for Trichomonas vaginalis
through wet mount preparation, and other organisms by culture, 40 (11.1%) werepositive for Trichomonas vaginalis,
6(1.7%), 48(13.3%) and 140(38.9%) were positive for Neisseria gonorrhoeae
, Gadnerella vaginalis
, and Candida albicans
respectively. The difference in age specific distribution of Trichomoniasis was statistically significant using the chi-square (P<0.01).
The finding of co-infections of T. vaginalis
with G. vaginalis
(0.6%), N. gonorrhoeae
(0.6%), and C. albicans
(2.8%) in this study suggests its role in predisposing the carriers to other serious sexually transmitted infections, including HIV infection. There is therefore the need for routine examination of sexually active women for the screening of Trichomonas vaginalis
in order to effect increased control efforts. Also, the isolation of T. vaginalis
in the genital secretions should lead to a search for other sexually transmitted organisms.