Using women advocacy groups to enhance knowledge and home management of febrile convulsion amongst mothers in a rural community of Sokoto State, Nigeria
AbstractIntroduction: Febrile convulsions (FC) are a common paediatric problem worldwide. Between 1 and 4% of children will have a febrile convulsion with about 4% of cases arising before the age of six months. Although FC is benign and does not cause death, brain damage or learning disorders, it is quite frightening to observers and parents who witness an episode of FC, would think the child is going to die. Methods: This was a quasiexperimental study (a pre and post-test interventional, one group), aimed at assessing the impact of health education on knowledge and home management of febrile convulsion amongst mothers in a rural community in North Western Nigeria. A one in three samples of fifty mothers that met the eligibility criteria where selected using systematic random sampling. Structured interviewer administered questionnaire with close and open-ended questions was administered to obtain data at pre- and post intervention. Results: The ages of the mothers ranged from 18-47 with a mean age of 33 ± 7.14years. The perceived causes of febrile convulsion included fever (28%), witch craft (80%) with majority (98%) of the mothers administering traditional medications. Proportion of study subjects with adequate knowledge of febrile convulsion at baseline and post intervention were 4% (mean knowledge score of 35.3± 9.48) and 96.0% (mean knowledge score of 77.69 ± 10.75) respectively (P<0.0001). Conclusion: Although inadequate knowledge and inappropriate home practices about FC were rampant in the study community, using community members to teach and sensitize the mothers on FC improved their knowledge base significantly. The use of effective educational intervention programmes and parental support groups will go a long way in reducing the incidence of FC among children in our communities.
Pan African Medical Journal 2013 14:49