Hymenolepis nana, the dwarf tapeworm, is a common intestinal infection of children worldwide. We evaluated infection and risk factor data that were previously collected from 14,761 children aged 2-15 years during a large-scale program in northern Peru. We found that 1,124 of 14,761 children (7.61%) had H. nana infection, a likely underestimate given that only a single stool sample was examined by microscopy for diagnosis. The strongest association with infection was lack of adequate water (adjusted prevalence ratio [aPR] 2.22, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.82-2.48) and sanitation infrastructure in the house (aPR 1.94, 95% CI 1.64-2.29). One quarter of those tested did not have a bathroom or latrine at home, which doubled their likelihood of infection. Similarly, one quarter did not have piped public water to the house, which also increased the likelihood of infection. Continued efforts to improve access to basic water and sanitation services will likely reduce the burden of infection in children for this and other intestinal infections.
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© 2017 by The American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.