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dc.contributor.authorSalvador, Fernando
dc.contributor.authorSulleiro, Elena
dc.contributor.authorSánchez-Montalvá, Adrián
dc.contributor.authorAlonso, Carmen
dc.contributor.authorSantos, Javier
dc.contributor.authorFuentes Corripio, Isabel 
dc.contributor.authorMolina, Israel
dc.identifier.citationParasit Vectors. 2016; 9 (1):548
dc.description.abstractBackground: Blastocystis spp. are among the most frequently observed intestinal parasites in humans. Despite the discovery of Blastocystis approximately 100 years ago, limited information is available regarding its pathogenesis, genetic diversity, and available treatment options. The aim of this study was to describe the epidemiological and clinical characteristics of patients with Blastocystis sp. infections diagnosed at Vall d’Hebron University Hospital (Barcelona, Spain). Methods: A retrospective observational study was performed which included all adult patients who attended Vall d’Hebron University Hospital from February 2009 to March 2014 that had Blastocystis sp. detected in their stool. Results: Four hundred eighteen patients were included, the median age was 36 (18–86) years and 236 (56.5 %) were men. Regarding patient symptoms, 234 (56 %) patients were completely asymptomatic, 92 (22 %) patients had symptoms, and 92 (22 %) patients had symptoms that could be attributed to other causes. Of the 92 patients with symptoms not attributable to other etiologies except for Blastocystis infection, the most frequent symptoms were diarrhea (61 patients, 66.3 %) and abdominal pain (34 patients, 37 %). Additionally, nine (9.8 %) patients had cutaneous manifestations. Thirty-one (7.4 %) patients received specific treatment for Blastocystis infection. The clinical response of treated patients was varied. Five patients experienced complete resolution of symptoms, 12 patients reported improvement of clinical symptoms, eight patients described no clinical improvement, and information was unavailable for six patients. Conclusions: Blastocystis infection was detected in 418 patients, most of them foreign-born. Although the vast majority of patients were asymptomatic, 22 % of patients had gastrointestinal symptoms or cutaneous manifestations in the absence of other causes. Despite the scarce information available, given the safety of antiparasitic treatment, and the percentage of patients who experienced resolution or improvement of symptoms, treatment should be considered in patients with chronic symptoms.
dc.description.sponsorshipThis study was supported by the 6th National Plan (PN) of Research + Development + Innovation (I + D + I) 2008–2011, ISCIII-General Division Networks and Cooperative Research Centres + FEDER funds + Collaborative Research Network on Tropical Diseases (RICET): RD12/0018/0020 and RD12/0018/0011.
dc.publisherBioMed Central (BMC) 
dc.subjectIntestinal protozoa
dc.subjectGastrointestinal symptoms
dc.titleEpidemiological and clinical profile of adult patients with Blastocystis sp. infection in Barcelona, Spain
dc.typejournal article
dc.rights.licenseAtribución 4.0 Internacional*
dc.identifier.journalParasites & Vectors
dc.repisalud.centroISCIII::Centro Nacional de Microbiología
dc.rights.accessRightsopen accesses_ES

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