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Parasitology research

Feconomics®; a new and more convenient method, the routine diagnosis of intestinal parasitic infections.


PMID 24781020

Abstract

Direct wet mount examination and concentration are the most commonly used methods for detecting intestinal parasites from fecal samples. Concentration methods are used when there are fewer protozoan cyst, coccidian oocyst, microsporidial spore, helminth egg, and larvae in the fecal samples. Early detection of the causative intestinal parasites plays a significant role in implementing timely and correct treatment, which relieves the patients' symptoms and also prevents recurrences. Formalin-ethyl acetate concentration (FEAC) is believed to be a gold standard method to detect most intestinal parasites. Thus, in this study, we evaluated the diagnostic value of Feconomics® [manufactured by Salubris Inc, Boston, USA. Patent application number (TR): 2010/07549] which is a simple, new, and rapid fecal concentration method for the detection of the intestinal parasites in human beings. We also compared the FEAC with Feconomics® and direct wet mount examination. A total of 918 fecal samples were collected from the patients suspected to have intestinal parasitic infection. Samples were examined with the direct wet mount, FEAC, and Feconomics® methods. Different parasite species 15.9% (146/918) with Feconomics®, 13.3% (122/918) with FEAC, and 9.8% (90/918) with direct wet mount examination, Feconomics® > FEAC > direct wet mount examinations were detected. They were statistically compared considering FEAC as the gold standard for parasitological diagnosis; the sensitivity and specificity of Feconomics® were calculated as 96 and 97%, respectively. Blastocystis hominis was found to be the most common parasite, followed by Giardia lamblia with direct wet mount examination, FEAC, and Feconomics® methods. Feconomics® proved to be better than not only FEAC in concentrating parasite egg and cyst forms as well as in maintaining characteristic morphology but it is also better in direct wet mount examination. Feconomics® eliminates the need for centrifugation by using absorbent beads that help the homogenization and concentration of the sample. Feconomics® in this study was considerably better than FEAC in detecting the trophozoites of Giardia lamblia. We suggest that Feconomics® be used for the routine diagnosis of intestinal parasitic infection in rural areas of developing countries due to the fact that a centrifuge is not required and it eliminates large stool particles.