Influence of Physical Factors of Apartments, Educational Attainment, Nationality and Unemployment on the Number of Cimex Lectularius Inquiries

By Trájer, Attila J.; Hammer, Tamás et al. | Central European Journal of Public Health, March 2019 | Go to article overview

Influence of Physical Factors of Apartments, Educational Attainment, Nationality and Unemployment on the Number of Cimex Lectularius Inquiries


Trájer, Attila J., Hammer, Tamás, Szigeti, Zsolt, Central European Journal of Public Health


(ProQuest: ... denotes formulae omitted.)

INTRODUCTION

Cimex lectularius and a close relative Cimex hemipterus are cosmopolite, obligatory hematophagous parasitic members of the cimicid family that feed predominantly on human blood in the manmade environment (1, 2). C. lectularius occur around the entire world including temperate areas (3). This species has been known as one of the most notable ectoparasites in the human history (4) occurring already in the ancient Egypt (5). From the second third of the 20th century, due to DDT use, the infestations of C. lectularius became rare in the developed world. This situation has changed and the rates of infestations have increased since the 1980's (6). Insecticide-resistance was already observed among bed bugs in the 1950's (7). After the 1980's, the number of reported infestations showed dramatic increase in the USA and Europe. The resurgence of bed bug infestations was observed e.g. in Zurich, where the dramatic increase of bed bug infestation was observed from the 1990s (8). C. lectularius is a recently re-emerging pest in the developed countries. The resurgence of bed bug infestations in the Northern Hemisphere can be explained by increased international travelling (9), efficiency problems of the new insecticide-free pest-control methods, increased insecticide resistance, more frequent exchange of second-hand furnishings, and certain aspects of socioeconomic trends that occurred in the last decades (10). Now, incidence of bed bugs continues to increase in urban environments throughout the world (11, 12). Based on the study of Li et al., both poverty and renting are significant risk factors for bed bug incidence (13). Bed bug infestations cause health problem predominantly in low-income housing communities since ineffective pest management practices are frequently associated with low-income households (14). Especially the multiunit housing buildings are affected where infestations chronically persist serving as dispersal foci of the pest (15). Studying the resurgence of the pest in Canada, Hwang et al. found that bed bugs started appearing in homeless shelters (16).

Then, it is not surprising that prevalence of bed bug infestations is also associated with resident's socioeconomic status (17) and commonly considered a consequence of poor hygiene and poverty (18). It is also known, that more than half of the worldwide infestations occur in the developing countries (19).

The main impact of the presence of C. lectularius is socioeconomic due to the common belief that poverty and poor hygienic conditions facilitate the emergence of bed bug infestations. In the present study the number of call inquiries on the size and equipment of apartments, education of male and female inhabitants, ratio of dependent people in the households, ratio of gypsy inhabitants, and ratio of unemployed people were monitored in the Hungarian capital, Budapest.

MATERIALS AND METHODS

Bed Bug Call Inquiry Data

The data of requests for treatment due to bed bug call inquiries in Budapest were collected from 1st March to 31st December 2015 in the praxis of the Abatox Ltd·. The Abatox Ltd. has been present in pest control for 24 years in Budapest. Every year performs insect (including flea, cockroach, bed bug, wasp, ant, tick) and rodent elimination in more than 10,000 apartments. The total number of call inquiries was 2,812. The inquiries were registered in all districts (I-XXIII) of Budapest.

The call inquiry rates (R) of apartments were calculated according to two following formula:

... Eq.l

Rj = rate of call inquiry

N = number of infested apartments in a given district

Na = total number of apartments in a given district

Geographical Processing

The geographical distribution of bed bug call inquiry rate values was depicted according to the georeferenced localizations of the cases and the R values of the districts. The total number of units was 23,255. …

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