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Title: Prenatal diagnosis and prevention of toxoplasmosis in pregnant women in Northern Vietnam: study protocol
Authors: Smit, G. Suzanne A.
Thi Lam Binh Vu
Trung Dung Do
Speybroeck, Niko
Devleesschauwer, Brecht
PADALKO, Elizaveta 
Roets, Ellen
Dorny, Pierre
Issue Date: 2017
Source: BMC INFECTIOUS DISEASES, 17, p. 1-8 (Art N° 364)
Abstract: Background: In Vietnam, no systematic prenatal toxoplasmosis screening is in place, and only few studies have assessed the prevalence and importance of this zoonotic parasite infection. In addition, no studies have been conducted to assess the risk factors associated with toxoplasmosis. This study protocol was developed to determine the seroprevalence of toxoplasmosis in pregnant women in Hanoi and Thai Binh, Northern Vietnam, and to evaluate the association with risk factors and congenital toxoplasmosis. The protocol was developed in a way that it could potentially evolve into a countrywide prenatal diagnosis and prevention program, with the main focus on primary prevention. Methods: The collaborating gynaecologists will invite eligible pregnant women attending antenatal care for the first time to participate in the study. At first consult, information about toxoplasmosis and its prevention will be provided. All participants will be asked to fill in a questionnaire, which is designed to analyse socio-demographic and biologically plausible risk factors associated with toxoplasmosis, and blood samples will be collected to determine the seroprevalence of toxoplasmosis in pregnant women. In case there is suspicion of a primary infection during pregnancy, the concerned women will be followed-up by the gynaecologists according to a predefined protocol. Every participant will be informed on her serological status, risk factors and prevention measures and is offered appropriate medical information and medical follow-up if required. Discussion: The hypothesis is that congenital toxoplasmosis is an important but currently under-diagnosed public health problem in Vietnam. This study can strengthen sustainable control of toxoplasmosis in Vietnam, provide a protocol for prenatal diagnosis, boost overall awareness, improve the knowledge about toxoplasmosis prevention and can be essential for evidence-based health policy.
Notes: [Smit, G. Suzanne A.; Dorny, Pierre] Univ Ghent, Fac Vet Med, Dept Virol Parasitol & Immunol, Salisburylaan 133, B-9820 Merelbeke, Belgium. [Smit, G. Suzanne A.; Dorny, Pierre] Inst Trop Med, Dept Biomed Sci, Nationalestr 155, B-2000 Antwerp, Belgium. [Smit, G. Suzanne A.; Speybroeck, Niko] Catholic Univ Louvain, Inst Hlth & Soc IRSS, Clos Chapelle Aux Champs 30, B-1200 Brussels, Belgium. [Thi Lam Binh Vu; Trung Dung Do] NIMPE, Parasitol Dept, 245 Luong The Vinh, Nam Tu Liem, Ha Noi, Vietnam. [Devleesschauwer, Brecht] Sci Inst Publ Hlth WIV ISP, Dept Publ Hlth & Surveillance, Juliette Wytsmanstr 14, B-1050 Brussels, Belgium. [Padalko, Elizaveta] Ghent Univ Hosp, Dept Clin Biol Microbiol & Immunol, Pintelaan 185, B-9000 Ghent, Belgium. [Padalko, Elizaveta] Hasselt Univ, Sch Life Sci, Agoralaan Bldg D, B-3590 Diepenbeek, Belgium. [Roets, Ellen] Ghent Univ Hosp, Womens Clin, Pintelaan 185, B-9000 Ghent, Belgium.
Keywords: Congenital toxoplasmosis; Toxoplasmosis during pregnancy; Prenatal diagnostics; Serology; Prevention; Vietnam;congenital toxoplasmosis; toxoplasmosis during pregnancy; prenatal diagnostics; serology; prevention; Vietnam
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e-ISSN: 1471-2334
DOI: 10.1186/s12879-017-2446-1
ISI #: 000402570700001
Rights: © The Author(s). 2017 Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.
Category: A1
Type: Journal Contribution
Validations: ecoom 2018
Appears in Collections:Research publications

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