Annals of African Medicine
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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2020  |  Volume : 19  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 182-187

Snakebite in children in Nigeria: A comparison of the first aid treatment measures with the world health organization's guidelines for management of snakebite in Africa


1 Department of Paediatrics, Enugu State University College of Medicine, ESUT, Enugu, Enugu State, Nigeria
2 Department of Community Medicine, Enugu State University College of Medicine, ESUT, Enugu, Enugu State, Nigeria
3 Department of Paediatrics, College of Medicine, University of Nigeria, Ituku/Ozalla, Enugu State, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Obinna Chukwuebuka Nduagubam
Children Emergency Room, Department of Paediatrics, Enugu State University College of Medicine, Enugu State
Nigeria
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/aam.aam_38_19

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Background: Snakebite and envenomation remains a public health problem with significant morbidity and mortality in children in developing countries. The World Health Organization (WHO) in 2010 developed guidelines for the prevention and management of snakebite in Africa. Aim: The aim of this study was to compare the pattern of first aid treatment among children presenting with snakebite/envenomation with the 2010 WHO guideline for the prevention and clinical management of snakebite in Africa. Patients and Methods: All children who presented with snakebite over a 7-year period in a teaching hospital in Enugu, Nigeria. The first aid treatment given to these children was obtained and was compared with the provisions of the WHO guideline for the prevention and clinical management of snakebite in Africa (2010). Data collected were analyzed using SPSS version 22. Results: Five (71.4%) of the snakebites occurred in the rainy season and in the dark involving the lower limbs in 85.7% of cases. Six (87.5%) of the patients received one form of first aid before presentation to a health facility. None received first aid interventions in line with the WHO recommendation. Topical application of herbal concoctions to the site of the bite (37.5%) was the most common intervention. One (14.3%) of the children was promptly brought to the health facility following snakebite. The interval from bite to presentation to the health facility ranged from 1 to 12 h (median 5 h: 43 min). Conclusion: Huge gaps still exist in the first aid treatment given to snakebite victims compared to the WHO guidelines.


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