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Paracheck rapid diagnostic test for detecting malaria infection in under five children: a population-based survey in Burkina Faso
Authors: Sekou Samadoulougou, Fati Kirakoya-Samadoulougou, Sophie Sarrassat, Halidou Tinto, Fidèle Bakiono, Issa Nebié, and Annie Robert
Source: Malaria Journal, 13:101 doi:10.1186/1475-2875-13-101
Topic(s): Child health
Children under five
Country: Africa
  Burkina Faso
Published: MAR 2014
Abstract: Background Over the past ten years, Rapid Diagnostic Tests (RDT) played a major role in improving the use of biological malaria diagnosis, in particular in poor-resources settings. In Burkina Faso, a recent Demography and Health Survey (DHS) gave the opportunity to assess the performance of the Paracheck® test in under five children nationwide at community level. Methods A national representative sample of 14,947 households was selected using a stratified two-stage cluster sampling. In one out of two households, all under five children were eligible to be tested for malaria using both RDT and microscopy diagnosis. Paracheck® performance was assessed using miscroscopy as the gold standard. Sensitivity and specificity were calculated as well as the diagnosis accuracy (DA) and the Youden index. Results The malaria infection prevalence was estimated at 66% (95% CI: 64.8-67.2) according to microscopy and at 76.2% (95% CI: 75.1-77.3) according to Paracheck®. The sensitivity and specificity were estimated at 89.9% (95% CI: 89.0-90.8) and 50.4% (95% CI: 48.3-52.6) respectively with a Diagnosis Accuracy of 77% and a Youden index of 40%. The positive predictive value for malaria infection was 77.9% (95% CI: 76.7-79.1) and the negative predictive value was 72.1% (95% CI: 69.7-74.3). Variations were found by age group, period of the year and urban and rural areas, as well as across the 13 regions of the country. Conclusion While the sensitivity of the Paracheck® test was high, its specificity was poor in the general under five population of Burkina Faso. These results suggest that Paracheck® is not suitable to assess malaria infection prevalence at community level in areas with high malaria transmission. In such settings, malaria prevalence in the general population could be estimated using microscopy. Keywords: Malaria; Diagnosis; RDT; Microscopy; Paracheck