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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 58  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 13-20

Epidemiology, triggers, and severity of childhood asthma in Ilesa, Nigeria: Implications for management and control

1 Department of Paediatrics and Child Health, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife; Department of Paediatrics, Wesley Guild Hospital, Ilesa, Nigeria
2 Department of Paediatrics, Wesley Guild Hospital, Ilesa, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Bankole Peter Kuti
Department of Paediatrics and Child Health, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0300-1652.218412

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Background: Knowledge about childhood asthma in a locality will assist clinicians to adequately manage the condition. This study set out to report the epidemiology, triggers of exacerbation, comorbid conditions, and severity of childhood asthma at a tertiary health facility in Nigeria and the implication of these, in management and symptoms control. Methods: Over a 15-month study period, children (aged <15 years) with physician-diagnosed asthma were consecutively recruited at the pediatric chest clinic of the hospital. Sociodemographic history, triggers, and comorbidities in the children were recorded. The severity and level of symptoms control were determined using Global Initiative for Asthma criteria. The children were examined and had lung function test. Appropriate descriptive and inferential statistics were used to analyze the data obtained. Results: A total of 110 children were recruited for the study with an overall male preponderance 1.6:1, however, more adolescent females than males were observed. The ages of the children ranged from 10 months to 14 years with mean (standard deviation) of 6.4 (3.9) years. The median (interquartile range) age at diagnosis was 2.5 (1.5–6.0) years. The comorbidities were allergic rhinoconjunctivitis (45.5%), atopic dermatitis (10.9%), and overweight/obesity (7.3%). The recognizable triggers of exacerbations were respiratory tract infections (RTIs) seen more in preschool than school age children (χ2 = 6.225; P = 0.031), exercise, dust, and fumes. Mild intermittent asthma (82.7%) was the most common forms, 13 (25.0%) of the children who had Spirometry had obstructive ventilatory pattern and 17.3% had suboptimal asthma control. Conclusion: The majority of children with asthma at the Wesley Guild Hospital, Ilesa were school age children, however, 10% were <2 years and most asthmatics (72.7%) were diagnosed before age five. RTI is a major trigger of exacerbation and more than one-half had other allergic conditions which should be looked for and managed to ensure successful asthma management.

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