Bacteriological and physicochemical parameters of some selected borehole water sources in Abakaliki metropolis, Nigeria


  • Iroha Chidinma Department of Pharmacy, Federal Teaching Hospital, P.M.B 102, Abakaliki, Ebonyi State, Nigeria
  • Okonta Matthew Department of Clinical Pharmacy and Pharmacy Management, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria
  • Ele Grace Department of Pharmacy, Nnamdi Azikiwe University Teaching Hospital, P.M.B. 5025, Nnewi, Anambra State, Nigeria
  • Nwakaeze Emmanuel Department of Applied Microbiology, Faculty of Sciences, Ebonyi State University, P.M.B. 053, Abakaliki, Ebonyi State, Nigeria
  • Ejikeugwu Chika Department of Applied Microbiology, Faculty of Sciences, Ebonyi State University, P.M.B. 053, Abakaliki, Ebonyi State, Nigeria
  • Iroha Ifeanyichukwu Department of Applied Microbiology, Faculty of Sciences, Ebonyi State University, P.M.B. 053, Abakaliki, Ebonyi State, Nigeria
  • Ajah Monique Cancer Screening Unit, Well Women Center, Federal Teaching Hospital, P.M.B 102, Abakaliki, Ebonyi State, Nigeria
  • Itumoh Emeka Department of Industrial Chemistry, Faculty of Sciences, Ebonyi State University, P.M.B. 053, Abakaliki, Ebonyi State, Nigeria



Bacterial resistance, Borehole water, Coliforms, Physiochemical parameters, Waterborne diseases


Background: Borehole water (groundwater) is the predominant source of water by the inhabitants of Abakaliki metropolis and it is generally considered a safe source of drinking water by the populace. This study was therefore, designed to assess the physicochemical and microbiological quality of borehole water samples in Abakaliki, Ebonyi State, Nigeria.

Methods: A total of twenty-five (25) water samples were collected from five (5) different locations (designated as point A, B, C, D and E) in Abakaliki and the temperature readings were taken at the site of collection. The physico-chemical parameters (turbidity, pH, total hardness, dissolved oxygen, electrical conductivity, phosphates, sulphates), microbiological and metal content were determined using standard techniques. Furthermore, the pathogens isolated were subjected to antibiotics susceptibility testing using disc diffusion method.

Results: The results of the microbiological study revealed that the bacterial pathogens isolated in this study include E. coli (40%), Staphylococcus aureus (32%), Pseudomonas aeruginosa (16%) and Klebsiella spp (12%). The borehole water was of low turbidity, colourless, odourless, and with ambient temperature. The values of the bacteria counts were 2.4x104 cfu/ml for bacteria pathogen isolated from location A, 2.3x103 cfu/ml for location B and location C, 2.1x104 cfu/ml for location E and 1.0x104 cfu/ml for location D. Antibiotic susceptibility studies showed that all isolated bacteria pathogens were highly resistant to most of the tested antibiotic especially nalidixic acid, ciprofloxacin, gentamicin, cefoxitin, sulphamethoxazole-trimethoprim, tobramycin, ofloxacin and erythromycin.

Conclusions: Findings from our study revealed that the borehole water analyzed within Abakaliki metropolis contained bacteria that are of public health importance including E. coli, S. aureus, P. aeruginosa and Klebsiella spp. The physical and chemical parameters of the water samples were found to be within the maximum accepted limits for drinking water with optimal physical and chemical properties. It was also discovered in this study that the isolated bacteria showed reduced susceptibility to some conventional antibiotics. It is therefore recommended that periodic assessment of the physicochemical and microbiological properties of borehole water in this area be carried out on water sources for public use in order to avoid the outbreak of some waterborne infections amongst the populace.


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How to Cite

Chidinma, I., Matthew, O., Grace, E., Emmanuel, N., Chika, E., Ifeanyichukwu, I., Monique, A., & Emeka, I. (2016). Bacteriological and physicochemical parameters of some selected borehole water sources in Abakaliki metropolis, Nigeria. International Journal Of Community Medicine And Public Health, 3(11), 3271–3277.



Original Research Articles