University of Ngaoundere Cameroon
Victor NGU NGWA, a Veterinarian, has completed his PhD from the University of Camerino School of Biosciences and Veterinary Medicine, Italy, and MSc. (Pathology) from the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Uppsala. He is a Senior Lecturer and the current head of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases department of the University of Ngaoundere School of Veterinary Medicine and Sciences. He has published more than 18 research papers in reputed journals and has been serving as a reviewer in quite a number of peer-reviewed journals.
Leptospirosis is an economically important neglected zoonotic disease often overlooked in Cameroon and Africa. Its complex epidemiology and transmission have hindered the full understanding of this disease. Due to unspecific symptoms in human and animals, it has led to poor suspicion and under-reporting of the disease. The aim of this study therefore is to contribute to the available knowledge of bovine and human leptospirosis through a prevalence study in slaughtered cattle and abattoir personnel at the Ngaoundéré Municipal Abattoir, investigating the risk factors involved and KAP (knowledge aptitude practice) assessment of the abattoir personnel with regards to leptospirosis. A total of 172 bovine and 96 human serum samples were screened for the detection of Leptospira spp antibodies by ELISA while questionnaire survey was used to obtain information on the risk factors of abattoir personnel. The results showed that 18.02% CI (4.7-33.34) of the animals slaughtered were seropositive to Leptospira spp hardjo antibody. Although there was no significant difference (p>0.05) in seropositivity between sex, it however existed (p<0.05) between the different age groups and body condition score. A prevalence of 10.42% CI (4.30-16.52) was obtained for the screened abattoir personnel with a significant difference (p<0.05) in seropositivity between those who made use of gloves during work. KAP assessment revealed that 96.2% of those surveyed made use of their personal protective equipment and 66% had never seen any of the characteristic symptoms of leptospirosis. Of those who have observed the symptoms, 5.7% of the respondents were aware of the disease called leptospirosis and 72.3% of them knew it is a zoonotic disease with 38.5% of the respondent affirmed that it could be transmitted through contact with the skin, urine, blood, and the secretions of an infected animal. Overall, the respondents who knew about leptospirosis in the study reported yellowness of carcass and liver (19.44%), jaundice (33.33%), infertility (2.78%), abortion (2.78%) while 38.88% of them did not know clinical sign. In conclusion, Leptospirosis is prevalent and distributed among the cattle and workers in the Ngaoundéré Municipal abattoir. Abattoir workers thus stand a greater risk of being infected, and since the infection may mimic other febrile infection, the illnesses may go unnoticed. Education of high-risk individual is necessary to combat this occupational disease.