The Prevalence of Hydatidosis in Slaughtered Livestock in Kenya

Using the post-mortem meat inspection records available in the department of veterinary services, Kabete, a retrospective abattoir survey was carried out to determine the prevalence of hydatidosis in cattle sheep, goats and pigs for a ten-year period (1989-1998) in Kenya. The prevalence was calculated for each of the 7 provinces and the overall prevalence for 7 provinces was then calculated from the pooled provincial data. Records from North-Eastern province were not available for analysis, since the meat inspectorate services in this province have not been taken over by the Department of Veterinary services. They are still under the Ministry of Health and the records are in the custody of this ministry. The prevalence of hydatid cysts in various animal organs was determined. Cattle showed the highest overall prevalence (50.4%), followed by sheep with 48.8%, goats with 34.3% and lastly pigs with 2.4%. cattle, sheep and goats slaughtered in Rift-Valley Province had the highest prevalence of hydatidosis, which was 14.1%, 15.6% and 11.8% respectively. In pigs, the highest prevalence (0.8%) was recorded in central province. In all the species, hydatid cysts were found to be commonly located in the lungs and liver, and they were rarely encountered in the other organs. Prevalence of livestock hydatidosis in Kenya appears to have increased, thus concerted control measures should be undertaken with emphasis being placed on the provinces with the highest prevalence of the disease.