Nationwide cross-sectional survey of schistosomiasis and soil-transmitted helminthiasis in Sudan: study protocol
In 2000, the World Health Organization (WHO) published an ultrasound field protocol for assessing morbidity due to schistosomiasis. The present study aims to review the acceptance of the WHO protocol for Schistosoma haematobium. A PubMed literature research using the keywords “ultrasound OR ultrasonography (US) AND schistosomiasis,” “US AND S. haematobium,” “US AND urinary schistosomiasis” from 2001 through 2014 was performed. Thirty-eight eligible publications reporting on 17,861 patients from 13 endemic and 2 non-endemic countries were analysed. Of these, 33 referred to field studies on 17,317 patients. The Niamey protocol was applied to 15,367/17,317 (88.74 %) patients in 23/33 (69.70 %) of field studies (all studies: 15,649/17,861 [87.61 %] patients (25/38 [68.42 %] studies). The acceptance of the protocol by single country in field studies varied from 0 to 100 %. It varied over time between 55.56 % (5/9) in the period from 2001 to 2004, to 87.50 % (7/8) from 2005 to 2008, to 62.50 % (5/8) from 2009 to 2011 and 75.00 % (6/8) from 2012 through 2014 (all studies: 50 % [5/10], 88.89 % [8/9], 62.50 % [5/8], 63.64 % [7/11], respectively). The Niamey protocol was applied also in 2/5 hospital studies in 282/544 (51.84 %) patients. The usefulness of the WHO protocol for S. haematobium infections is confirmed by its worldwide acceptance. Some simplifications might facilitate its use also for focused ultrasound examinations performed by less skilled examiners. Organ abnormalities due to schistosomiasis detectable by ultrasonography not yet covered by the WHO protocol should be added to the additional investigations section.