and associated risk factors, 2011– 2014
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and associated risk factors, 2011– 2014

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  • Alternative Title:
    Clin Infect Dis
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    Toxocariasis results from infection with larval stages of a dog and cat intestinal nematode and causes human morbidity. The current US estimate of Toxocara exposure is 13.9% (NHANES III 1988–1994).


    We used a multiplex bead based assay (Tc-CTL-1MBA) with purified Toxocara canis antigen to estimate Toxocara antibody seroprevalence in serum of 13,509 persons six years and older from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), 2011–2014 and identified seropositivity risk factors. We tested a subset of 500 samples with the T. canis enzyme immunoassay used in NHANES III to estimate prior seroprevalence had samples from NHANES III been tested by Tc-CTL-1MBA.


    The age standardized estimate of Toxocara seroprevalence was 5.0% (95% confidence interval [CI], 4.2%–5.8%), lower than previously reported even adjusting for increased Tc-CTL-1MBA specificity. Risk factors for seropositivity from multiple logistic regression were older age (odds ratio [OR], 2.1; 95%CI, 1.1–3.9 in persons 50–59 years old; OR, 1.7; 95%CI, 1.0–2.8 in persons 60–69; and OR, 2.6; 95%CI, 1.5–4.7 in persons ≥70 versus persons 6–11), non-Hispanic Black race/Hispanic origin (OR, 1.4; 95%CI, 1.0–2.0) versus non-Hispanic White, male sex (OR, 1.9; 95%CI, 1.6–2.2), living below poverty level (OR, 1.9; 95%CI, 1.4–2.6), households with ≥0.5 persons per room (OR, 1.3; 95%CI, 1.0–1.6), less than college education (OR, 1.9; 95%CI, 1.5–2.4), and birth outside the United States (OR, 3.6; 95%CI, 2.6–5.1).


    Toxocara seroprevalence estimates in 2011–14 were lower than in a study from NHANES III, 1988–94, but seropositivity risk factors remained the same and should continue to be the focus of prevention efforts.

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