Abstract 4.9




Heart Failure among Paediatric Emergencies in Calabar,
South Eastern Nigeria.


M. Anah, O. Antia-Obong, O. Odigwe, V. Ansa 

College of Medical Sciences, 
University of Calabar, Calabar – Nigeria 




A study of heart failure among paediatric emergencies in the University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, Calabar, was prospectively carried out over a period of 9 months in the Children’s Emergency Room (CHER).Two hundred & thirty four out of 1512 admissions presented with heart failure giving a prevalence of 15.5%.The main causes of heart failure among the 234 children were anaemia (73.1%), pneumonia (17.5%) and ventricular septal defect (3.8%). Pneumonia (61% of cases) and ventricular septal defect (78% of cases) were largely encountered in infants. Majority (69%) of the patients with anaemic heart failure were aged between I and 5years .The main diseases associated with anaemia were malaria (73.9%), sickle cell anaemia (12.5%) and septicaemia (6.3%). Heart failure constituted 1.7 % (26 out of 1512) of total deaths in CHER during the period. The fatality rates for patients in whom heart failure complicated anaemia, pneumonia and ventricular septal defect were 9.9%, 12.2% and 44.4% respectively. Most of the deaths (77%) occurred within the first 24 hours of hospitalization. Anaemia and acute respiratory infections, which are the leading causes of heart failure in our children, must be promptly identified, treated and prevented

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