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A matched case-control study was conducted in the Maternal and Child Health Clinic (MCH) in Ifakara, Tanzania, during the rainy season in order to elucidate the risk factors for and etiology of diarrheal diseases in children under 5 years of age. Cases (103) and controls (206) were matched for sex and age group. Precoded questionnaires with demographic details, clinical history, and physical signs were completed. Stools samples were collected for bacterial, parasitological, and viral studies. A high number of siblings (odds ratio [OR], 0.86; P = 0.027), the number of siblings surviving (OR, 0.82; P = 0.007), the birth order (OR, 0.85; P = 0.018) and the distance from the house to the water source (OR, 0.33; P = 0.011) were associated with the risk of diarrhea. There were high rates of enteropathogen isolates in stool samples from children without diarrhea (52.23%). Shigella species were the only enteropathogen statistically related with diarrhea (OR, 2.90; P < 0.029). Enterotoxigenic, enteropathogenic, and enteroaggregative strains of Escherichia coli were not related with diarrhea, and neither were Giardia lamblia or Salmonella species.


Journal article


J Clin Microbiol

Publication Date





4459 - 4462


Case-Control Studies, Child, Preschool, Diarrhea, Feces, Female, Humans, Infant, Infant, Newborn, Male, Risk Factors, Tanzania, Water Supply