0.05). This report is critical to stakeholders in the public health in the control of the rising cases of diarrhea in <5 years old children in Benue State, Nigeria. '>
Discipline: Health Science
Diarrheagenic bacteria are the leading causes of diarrhea or bacterial gastroenteritis, leading to high child morbidity. This work investigated the prevalence of diarrheagenic bacteria among children (< 5 Years) in two public health facilities in Makurdi metropolis, Benue State, Nigeria. A total of 400 children who presented with diarrhea cases were sampled through stool collections. Cultural and biochemical characterizations were carried out following standard practices. Biochemical results identified a total of six bacterial species belonging to five genera that were associated with diarrhea in the 400 stool samples investigated. Bacterial infections associated with diarrheal cases were 20% prevalent with the following distributions: Escherichia coli (10.75%), Proteus mirabilis (2%), Proteus vulgaris (1.5%), Salmonella typhi (1.75%), Shigella dysenteriae (2%), and Klebsiella pneumoniae (2%). The prevalence levels across the five species of bacteria were significantly different (P<0.05), attributed to the highest bacterial prevalence of E. coli (10.75%) and the low level of other bacteria (≤ 2 %). E. coli represented 53.75% of the isolates. Infection was most predominant in the 36-47 months of age, followed by 48-59 months. Thus, a significant association was associated between children's ages and diarrheal infection (χ2 =81.91, p<0.01). However, infection did not depend on sex status (P>0.05). This report is critical to stakeholders in the public health in the control of the rising cases of diarrhea in <5 years old children in Benue State, Nigeria.