Echocardiography Findings in Clinically Confirmed Congenital Rubella Syndrome Cases seen at the University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital, Nigeria
Background: Congenital rubella syndrome (CRS) is known to affect thousands of children in the developing world because rubella vaccination is not available routinely in most of these countries. Among its many manifestations only congenital heart disease is life threatening. This study was undertaken to ascertain the cases of echocardiographic determined congenital heart disease in clinically confirmed CRS cases.
Methods: Data of patients with clinically confirmed CRS seen over a period of 5 years in the Paediatric cardiology clinic of the University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital was retrieved and analysed.
Results: Seven cases (2.8 % of total cardiac cases) were seen. 6 (85.7%) cases had at least one murmur on auscultation. Patent ductus arteriosus was the commonest cardiac defect seen either in isolation or incombination with a VSD or ASD. Only one child had no cardiac defect. 4 (57.1%) of them had been admitted for heart failure at least once and 2 (28.6 %) were on anti-failure regimen, one of whom had cardiac surgery one month ago.
Conclusion: In view of the fact that 6 (85.7%) of the patients with CRS had at least one congenital heart defect, we advocate routine echocardiography on patients with CRS to ensure early treatment and reduce mortality and morbidity.We also advocate that rubella vaccination be given routinely in developing countries.
Keywords: Congenital Rubella Syndrome, Echocardiography, Port Harcourt.