Giardiasis

Diagnosis of Giardia by microscopic methods is a reliable in spite of irregular excretion of cysts. However, at least three faecal samples obtained on non-consecutive days are required to overcome the disadvantage of this irregular excretion. To assist the detection of infection a variety of coproantigen detection assays based on ELISA have been developed which have been met with success (Wolfe 1992; Faubert 2000).

Serological analysis can contribute to diagnosis in non-endemic areas if the assay is performed at least three weeks after an untreated infection (Ljungstrom and Castor 1992). The determination of specific IgM antibodies seems to correlate with active Giardia in endemic areas (Sullivan et al. 1991; Chaudhuri et al. 1992).

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