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Morbidity and Mortality Pattern of Childhood Illnesses Seen at the Children Emergency Unit of Federal Medical Center, Asaba, Nigeria


Ezeonwu BU, Chima OU, Oguonu T, Ikefuna AN, Nwafor I

Background: Morbidity and mortality from childhood illnesses has remained a major point of interest globally. Malaria, respiratory tract infection and diarrheal diseases are the leading causes of childhood morbidity and mortality. Aim: The aim of the following study is to determine the pattern of morbidity and mortality of children seen at the children emergency room of a tertiary hospital, Federal Medical Center in Asaba, Nigeria. Subjects and Methods: A descriptive study of post‑neonatal childhood admissions over a 5 year period (January 2007‑December 2011) was undertaken. Information obtained included age, gender, diagnosis, month of admission and outcome. Descriptive and inferential statistics were used to analyze the demographic characteristics of the patients and associations with outcome variables. Results: A total of 3,830 children with aged ranges between 1 month and 180 months were admitted within this period of study from January 2007 to December 2011: 2,189 males (57.2%, 2189/3830) and 1,641 (42.8%, 1641/3830) females. More than 70% (2912/3830) were under 5 years of age. The common indications for admission were malaria (30.3%, 1159/3830), diarrheal diseases (20.4%, 780/3830), respiratory tract infections (RTIs) (19.0%, 728/3830) and sepsis (4.4%, 168/3830). There were 221 (5.8%, 221/3830) deaths and more deaths were recorded in children <12 months of age, P < 0.01. Major causes of death were complicated malaria (24.4%, 54/221), sepsis (19.9%, 44/221), diarrheal diseases (18.1%, 40/221) and RTIs (7.7%, 17/221). Conclusion: Preventable infections are the major causes of morbidity and mortality in CHER and children <5 years of age are commonly affected.

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Annals of Medical and Health Sciences Research The Annals of Medical and Health Sciences Research is a bi-monthly multidisciplinary medical journal.
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