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August 1982

Health Screening of Indochinese Refugee Children

Author Affiliations

From the Children's Hospital Medical Center, Oakland, Calif (Drs Tittle, Chase, and Morrell and Ms Espinoza), and the California State Department of Health (Drs Harris and Jackson), Oakland; and the University of California, San Francisco (Dr Tittle).

Am J Dis Child. 1982;136(8):697-700. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1982.03970440041011

• The first 100 Indochinese refugee patients screened at Oakland (Calif) Children's Hospital had a remarkably high incidence of treatable infectious and parasitic diseases. The PPD skin tests were positive in 28%, and stool parasites were present in 65%. There were wide differences among the various ethnic groups in prevalence of stool parasites, anemia, and hemoglobin E trait, with a higher rate among Cambodians accounting for these differences. There were also differences in stool parasite patterns when the refugees were separated by ethnic origin. Cambodians had predominantly hookworm and Strongyloides, Laotians harbored hookworm and Trichuris, and Vietnamese were infested with Trichuris and Giardia. Malaria, Pott's disease, and congenital syphilis were among the uncommonly encountered diseases. Results of screening will vary with ethnic origin, but health screening has a high yield for all Indochinese refugees.

(Am J Dis Child 1982;136:697-700)