The Use Of Immunochromatographic Technique (ICT) In The Diagnosis Of Malaria In Ilorin, Nigeria

MS Odimayo, AA Akande, SS Taiwo, QB Omotesho



Malaria is a major global health problem with about 2.4 billion people at risk. It is the commonest cause of outpatient consultations and one of the leading causes of paediatrics medical admission. Prompt and accurate diagnosis is the key to effective disease management and one of the main interventions of the global malaria strategy. We assess the sensitivity, specificity, predictive values and diagnostic accuracy of immunochromatographic technique (ICT) with the aim of assessing its relevance to the diagnosis of malaria in the North Central part of Nigeria. The study population, which comprised of 39 subjects aged 1 to 49 years, was sent to the hospital laboratory after clinical assessment. Thirty-five (89.7%) of the 39 subjects with fever had parasite count by thick blood film (TBF) ranging from 60-7,200 parasites/µL of blood. Twenty-five of these were positive by the dipstick technique giving a sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, negative predictive value and accuracy for the ICT of 71.4%, 100%, 100%, 28.5% and 74.3% respectively when compared with the TBF. All four (4) subjects that were negative microscopically also tested negative with the ICT kit. We therefore conclude that ICT kits is a good alternative in diagnosis of malaria especially in adult in an endemic environment, because it is fast, requires simple manpower and no need of heavy equipment, However, before antigen tests can replace the thick and thin film, it should cover and differentiate between all Plasmodia species and detect lower level of parasitaemia.

Afr. J. Clin. Exper. Microbiol. 2004; 5 (3): 242-246