Genitourinary tuberculosis in Nigeria; a review of thirty-one cases

  • JC Orakwe Department Of Surgery, Nnamdi Azikiwe University Teaching Hospital, Nnewi, Nigeria
  • PIS Okafor


Objective: To report and discuss the characteristics of genitourinary tuberculosis as observed in a sub-Saharan African setting, where reports suggest its rarity despite reported high incidence and prevalence of pulmonary tuberculosis.

Patients and Method: 31 consecutive patients with discharge diagnoses of genitourinary tuberculosis seen in a small community-based hospital over a five-year period were retrospectively studied.

Result: There were 28 males and three females, with a mean age of 37.6 (SD 11.5) years. Forty-three sites were involved in seven organs: epididymis 25 (58.1%), kidney seven (16.3%), testis four (9.3%), bladder three (7.0%), ureter two (4.7%), prostate one (2.3%), and cord of the testis one (2.3%). The commonest presenting features were scrotal/testicular mass with or without pain/tenderness (80.6%), fever/headache (51.6%), and dysuria (22.6%). Other common features were back, loin, or abdominal pain/tenderness, hydrocoele, scrotal abscess, and haematuria. 26.9% had evidence of concurrent or previous pulmonary tuberculosis, and 9.1% were positive on HIV 1 & 11 screening.

Conclusion: With the prevailing conditions in sub-Saharan Africa and most of the developing world and the slightly different characteristics of the disease in our environment, diagnosis of genito-urinary tuberculosis may be difficult. It is advised that patients with unexplained symptoms in the urinary tract should be investigated for tuberculosis.

Keywords: genitourinary tuberculosis, Sub-Saharan Africa, Nigeria

Nigerian Journal of Clinical Practice Vol. 8(2) 2005: 69-73

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eISSN: 1119-3077