Palpable lingual cysts, a possible indicator of porcine cysticercosis, in Teso District, Western Kenya

Florence K. Mutua, BVM, MSc; Thomas F. Randolph, PhD; Samuel M. Arimi, BVM, MSc, PhD; Philiph M. Kitala, BVM, MSc, PhD; Samuel M. Githigia, BVM, MSc, PhD; Arve L. Willingham, DVM, MSc, PhD; Francis M. Njeruh, BVM, MSc, PhD

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Objectives: To estimate the prevalence of palpable lingual cysts in pigs in Western Kenya, a possible indicator of porcine cysticercosis, and to study the potential risk factors associated with this clinical finding.

Methods: During a cross-sectional survey, 316 randomly selected small-scale farms were visited, from which a case-control study of 31 case farms and 93 randomly selected control farms was constructed. Information on potential risk factors for Taenia solium cysticercosis-taeniosis was obtained using questionnaires administered via personal interviews.

Results: Farm prevalence of palpable lingual cysts was estimated at 9.8% (31 of 316) (95% confidence interval [CI], 6.5%-13.1%). Total number of pigs testing positive was 33, resulting in a pig prevalence of 6.5% (95% CI, 4%-9%). Pigs were kept as a source of income (98%) and for home consumption (2%). Sources of pigs included local purchases (94%; 117 of 124), and purchases from Uganda (6%; seven of 124). Most farmers (95%; 118 of 124) kept their pigs on free range. Pork was sourced from local butcheries (85%) and home slaughtering (15%). Most households slaughtering pigs at home had their pork “inspected” by household friends (five of nine). Absence of latrines was more common in case households (42%; 13 of 31) than in controls (18%; 17 of 93) (P = .01; OR = 3.2; 95% CI, 1.2%-8.55).

Implications: Palpable lingual cysts are prevalent in the locally raised pigs of Western Kenya. Further studies using more sensitive diagnostic tests are required to confirm the risk of porcine cysticercosis.

Keywords: Taenia solium, cysticercosis, taeniosis, lingual cysts

RIS citationCite as: Mutua FK, Randolph TF, Arimi SM, et al. Palpable lingual cysts, a possible indicator of porcine cysticercosis, in Teso District, Western Kenya. J Swine Health Prod 2007;15(4):206-212.

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