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Evaluation of the accuracy of parasitological techniques for the diagnosis of intestinal parasites in cats.

ABSTRACT

The accuracy of the parasitological techniques of Willis, Hoffman-Pons-Janer or Lutz (HPLJ), Sheather and Faust was evaluated in fecal samples from stray cats caught by the Zoonosis Control Center in Goiânia, Goiás, Brazil. These four techniques were applied separately to analyze 154 fecal samples, and their accuracy was analyzed based on an evaluation of their sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive values, and Kappa index, resulting in the selection of the Willis technique as the nominal gold standard. Of the 154 samples, 115 (74.68%) tested positive for intestinal parasites. The analysis of the frequency of positivity indicated that the HPLJ technique detected 86.1% of the positive samples and was the closest to the gold standard. The analysis of the accuracy of the techniques was evaluated using the most prevalent parasites. The Sheather technique showed the highest accuracy in the detection of Ancylostomatidae, while the Sheather and HPLJ techniques showed similar accuracies in the detection of Cystoisospora spp. when compared to the gold standard. Lastly, the Faust technique showed the highest accuracy in the detection of Toxoplasma gondii when compared to the gold standard. This study underscores the importance of combining parasitological techniques in the diagnosis of intestinal parasites in cats.