Abstract The paper describes a study carried out in a community in Dongdian township, Anhui Province, People's Republic of China. Medical history and the results of a physical examination, ultrasound investigation, parasitological and serological tests for Schistosoma japonicum infection were compared in 661 persons of 169 households. A lack of correlation between parasitological and serological indicators of infection and morbidity was observed in this area of low (6.4%) prevalence and intensity of infection. The prevalence of abnormal ultrasound findings in the liver in this population was high (56%), and was significantly higher than the prevalence of S. japonicum infection. The abnormal ultrasound findings correlated with a history of schistosomiasis, and the correlation increased significantly according to the number of times treated and the time since the last treatment, which suggested that past parenteral treatment has a role in the high rate of abnormal liver ultrasound findings. The significant correlation between the qualitative and quantitative serological results and abnormal ultrasound parenchymal patterns suggests that cross-reactivity between the etiology of the parenchymal disease and these tests is occurring. The presence of HBsAg correlated with the composite presence of ultrasound abnormalities of the liver parenchyma: increased echogenicity, periportal fibrosis and/or nodules and irregular fibrosis, whereas a normal ultrasound pattern was associated with the absence of HBV antigenemia.