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ARTICLE
Year : 2011  |  Volume : 16  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 1-8

Perception, attitude and knowledge of sickle cell anaemia among students of a Nigerian University


1 Department of Mental Health, School of Medicine, College of Medical Sciences, University of Benin, Benin City, Nigeria
2 Department of Haematology and Blood Transfusion, School of Medicine, College of Medical Sciences, University of Benin, Benin City, Nigeria
3 Department of Child Health, School of Medicine, College of Medical Sciences, University of Benin, Benin City, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
C E Omoti
Department of Haematology and Blood Transfusion, University of Benin, Benin-city
Nigeria
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4314/jcm.v16i2.1

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Background: There is a high prevalence of the S gene in the African population. The economic, social and psychological burden the disease possesses on sufferers and caregivers necessitates fundamental knowledge of the disease. Methods: A total of 500 students (male=340, female=160; mean age, 24±4.5 years) drawn from various faculties and departments and different study levels in University of Benin, Nigeria were studied. This cross-sectional study was conducted between January 2006 and September 2006. Data were collected using a questionnaire containing both open and close ended questions developed by the authors. Data were analyzed descriptively. Results: A majority of the respondents (82.6%) had an appropriate knowledge of the clinical characteristics peculiar to sickle cell anaemia. Respondents attitudes towards positive haemoglobin SS foetus was no termination of pregnancy (45.2%) with religious convictions (32.6%) and right to life (21.2%) as the main reasons given. Avoidance of suffering (50.8%) both to the carrier and caregiver was the main reason given in favor of therapeutic abortion. Conclusions: The need for increased enlightenment cannot be over emphasized. It is recommended that genetic counseling be made a vital aspect of the curriculum irrespective of faculties/departments of admission as a means of controlling the sickle cell disease.


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