Pattern of chronic diarrhoea in children: a prospective analysis of causes, clinical features and outcome.

F. O. Akinbami, P. Venugopalan, I. B. Elnour, V. Nirmala, P. Abiodun, J. C. Azubuike

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Abstract

OBJECTIVES: To determine the pattern of chronic diarrhoea in children in Oman. STUDY DESIGN: This is a prospective study carried out over a 7 year period at the Sultan Qaboos University Hospital, Muscat, Oman. SUBJECTS: Sixty two children (37 M:25 F), aged 3 months to 13 years who presented with chronic diarrhoea, defined as diarrhoea persisting for more than 4 weeks, were studied. RESULTS: Principal identifiable causes in the study population include post-gastroenteritis syndrome in 50% of cases, enteric infections and infestations in 27%, and coeliac disease in 13%. On presentation 63% were malnourished, 27% were anaemic while 39% were dehydrated. The median duration of hospital admission was 50 days. Majority of the patients responded to conservative therapy with correction of dehydration, and careful nutritional supplementation, in addition to specific therapy where necessary. Mortality was low (1.5%) resulting from immunodeficiency and gram-negative septicaemia. CONCLUSION: Chronic diarrhoea remains an important cause of morbidity especially malnutrition in children and early and adequate nutritional rehabilitation plays a pivotal role in the management.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)53-56
Number of pages4
JournalThe Nigerian postgraduate medical journal
Volume13
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2006

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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