Nigerian Journal of Clinical Practice

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Some emerging issues in medical admission pattern in the tropics

OO Okunola, AA Akintunde, PO Akinwusi


Background: There is a changing pattern in terms of medical admissions worldwide with an alarming increase in the prevalence of noncommunicable diseases, especially in the tropics over the last decade. The aim of this study was to describe the pattern of medical admission and highlight emerging issues of noncommunicable diseases in a Nigerian University Teaching Hospital. Materials and Methods: A retrospective review of medical admission at the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology Teaching Hospital, Osogbo, South Western Nigeria, over a 3 years period (January 2005 to December 2007). Data were retrieved from the medical records of all medical admission over the study period. Results: During the study period, 1786 patients were admitted into the medical wards. This consisted of 1089 males (61.0%) and 697 females (39.0%). Their ages ranged from 14 to 96 years with mean ages of 51 ± 16.89 years. Subjects ≥60 years of age accounted for 27.3% and 29.8% of total males and female admissions which were the largest age group. Noncommunicable diseases were responsible for 47.99% of total medical admissions. The indications for admission in order of frequency include cerebrovascular accidents 239 (13.4%), diabetes mellitus 194 (10.9%), tuberculosis 151 (8.5%), and chronic kidney disease 116 (6.5%). Hypertension was the underlying risk factor in majority of patients with CVD and CKD. Conclusion: Noncommunicable disease accounted for a significant number of admissions over 3 year duration. The elderly accounted for a major age group admitted for medical diseases. Therefore, preventive strategies against noncommunicable disease and effective geriatric care are advocated.

Keywords: Cardiovascular disease, noncommunicable disease, tropics

Nigerian Journal of Clinical Practice • Jan-Mar 2012 • Vol 15 • Issue 1
AJOL African Journals Online