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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2022  |  Volume : 15  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 176-179

Autopsy trends in paediatric mortalities in a Nigerian tertiary hospital


1 Department of Anatomical Pathology, Edo University, Iyamho, Edo State, Nigeria
2 Department of Pathology, University College Hospital, Ibadan, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Sebastian Anebuokhae Omenai
Department of Anatomical Pathology, Edo State University, Uzairue, Edo State
Nigeria
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/hmj.hmj_30_22

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Background: Sub-Saharan Africa has the highest childhood mortality worldwide. In this study, we reviewed post-mortem records retrospectively noting both the causes of death and autopsy trend in childhood documented at our hospital. Aim: This study was done to ascertain the mortality patterns in childhood as seen in post mortem examinations. Materials and Methods: Autopsy records of deceased who were 16 years or less performed from 2008 to 2017 in our hospital were accessed and reviewed. Written consents were duly obtained before all post-mortem examinations. The causes of death were defined using the International Classification of Diseases-11. Results: There were 89 cases representing 8.2% of 1092 autopsies performed within the review period. Most of the childhood mortalities were in the 1st year of life. The majority of cases in the 1st year of life were cases of early neonatal death (40%), followed by deaths from 29 days to 1 year (34.3%) and late neonatal death constituting 25.7% of cases. Infections resulted in deaths in 34.8% of cases, followed by malignancies at 12.4%, developmental anomalies at 10.1%, accidents at 6.7%, sickle cell disorder at 4.5%, and nephrotic syndrome at 4.5%. Pneumonia represented 48.4% of all infectious death, followed by bacteria sepsis of newborn at a distant 9.7%. Malignancies are the main cause of mortality in children above 10 years of age. It constitutes 36% of the cases in that age group. Mortalities from developmental anomalies were relatively more common in infants (17.1% of deaths). Conclusion: This study has shown varying causes of death in different age demographics among children in the population studied. Infection control and adequate treatment in addition to early diagnosis of malignancies are advocated.


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