Superficial mycoses among psychiatric patients in Mathari hospital, Nairobi, Kenya

  • M Ogutu
  • Z Ngángá
  • M Namasaka
  • M Wambura


Objective: To determine the prevalence of superficial mycoses among psychiatric patients.
Design: Randomised Prospective study
Setting: Mathari Mental Hospital, and Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, Nairobi Kenya.
Results: A study was conducted on prevalence of superficial fungal infections among psychiatric patients in Mathari Hospital, Nairobi, Kenya during the period of July to November 2009. 152 patients were assessed and samples collected from 25 patients with clinically suggestive symptoms of dermatomycosis revealed a 12.5% prevalence of superficial mycosis. There was no significant difference between males and females
with superficial mycosis (P>0.05). Twenty percent of the patients who were on topical application had no viable organisms. Microsporum was the predominant species isolated while the skin was the site most commonly affected (64 %). Epidermophyton was the least prevalent. Terbinafin was the most effective antifungal while ketoconazole was the least effective.
Conclusion: All patients admitted at Mathari hospital should be screened for fungal infection and treated. Terbinafin can be used as first line treatment of dermatomycosis after screening all psychiatric patients in Mathari Mental hospital.

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eISSN: 0012-835X