Behavioural changes in children with sickle cell disease in Benin City, Nigeria
Aim:This study was conducted to determine the prevalence of behavioural changes in children with sickle cell disease in Benin City, Nigeria.
Children with SCD are at risk of several neurological, developmental and psychosocial complications. These complications significantly modify the conduct and activities of these children with resultant behavioural changes.Adequate description of behavioural complications in children with SCD to engender development of screening and management guidelines is still lacking especially in Nigeria with a high burden of SCD; hence, this study,
One hundred and eleven (111) children with SCD were recruited for the study. Behavioural data was collected using the Children Behaviour Questionnaire (CBQ) which is a structured questionnaire for screening children for behavioural abnormalities. Data collected was analyzed using SPSS 21 and statistical significance was set at p=<0.05.
The male: female ratio was 3:1. Majority 107(96.4%) of the children had Hb SS and the age of the children ranged from one year to 19 years with the mean age of 8.69 ± 4.53 years. Over half of the children 64(57.7%) had high CBQ score of seven and above while 47(43.3%) had low CBQ values below seven. Age, sex, nutritional status and type of SCD were not statistically associated with CBQ scores.
This study found a high number of children with SCD with high CBQ scores suggesting a high prevalence of behavioural disorders in these children. Further psychiatric evaluation of children with high scores should be carried out to identify those at risk of specific behavioural disorders and ensure early commencement of appropriate management.