Childhood diabetes mellitus in Port Harcourt: any change in prevalence and outcome?

  • P I Opara
  • I C Anochie
  • F U Eke


Background: Diabetes mellitus (DM) is the commonest endocrine disorder seen in children. A previous study, done in Port Harcourt, showed a prevalence of 1.2/1000, with all the cases being type 1, and a high mortality rate of 28.4%. This study was carried out, to determine if there had been any changes in the type of DM and the outcome. Method: A retrospective search of diabetic patients admitted into our Children\'s medical wards, over a 6-year period (January 2000- December 2005) was done. Their case files were analyzed for patients\' characteristics, type and duration of DM, frequency of hospitalization, complications and outcome. All the patients were managed by the Paediatric endocrinology unit which was set up in 2000. Results: Out of 6,715 admissions, 11 patients had DM, giving a hospital prevalence of 1.6/1000. The male: female ratio was 1: 1.2. The patients were aged 10months- 16years, with a mean age of 11.8 ± 1.53 years. All the patients were newly diagnosed type 1 DM. Nine (81.8%) were from low socioeconomic background and two (18.2%) had a positive family history of diabetes. The mean body mass index of the patients was 18.5 ±0.88 kg/m2. All the patients were managed with parenteral insulin and diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) was seen in 10 (90.1%). There was no hospital mortality, showing a marked improvement compared to the previous study. Conclusion: Type 1 DM is still the commonest type of diabetes seen in children in Port Harcourt, and has improved outcome.

Keywords: Diabetes, Prevalence, Outcome, Children, Port Harcourt

PHMJ Vol. 2 (2) 2008: pp. 126-129

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eISSN: 0795-3038