Asymptomatic carriage of Plasmodium spp. and blood microfilariae among blood donors at the National Blood Transfusion Center (NBTC) in Abidjan in 2022


Gonat Serge Pacome Dou*, N’da Angbeletchi David Aka, Guy Landry Adjo, Olivia Nassoue, Marietou Tamboura, Akissi Nadege Rosine N'guessan, Arthur Anzara, Affoué Sandrine Kouakou, Kalou Dibert Zika and Koffi Daho Adoubryn

Blood transfusion can be the source of transmission of blood-borne parasites. However, in Côte d'Ivoire, endemic blood-borne parasites such as microfilariae and Plasmodium are not tested during blood donations. The aim of this study was to contribute to transfusion safety by testing blood donors for Plasmodium and microfilariae. A cross-sectional study was carried out from June 20 to July 20, 2022, at the National Blood Transfusion Centre in Abidjan (Côte d'Ivoire). It concerned the donors of this center. For each donor who agreed to take part in the study, a blood smear, a thick drop, and a leuko-concentration test using the modified Knott technique were performed. A total of 369 donors took part in the study, including 321 men. The average age of blood donors was 36. The prevalence of asymptomatic carriage of Plasmodium spp. was 2.7%, with a mean parasite density of 2233.1 trophozoites per μL of blood. The only plasmodial species found was Plasmodium falciparum. No bloodstream microfilariae were found. Only 21.7% of donors used impregnated mosquito nets, while 39.3% occasionally used indoor residual spraying. No link was found between asymptomatic malaria parasite carriage and the socio-demographic characteristics investigated. Asymptomatic carriage of malaria parasites is a reality among blood donors in Côte d'Ivoire. It is therefore necessary to implement measures to combat post-transfusion malaria.

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