Spectrum of heart diseases in a new cardiac service in Nigeria: an echocardiographic study of 1441 subjects in Abeokuta

BMC Res Notes. 2008 Oct 28;1:98. doi: 10.1186/1756-0500-1-98.


Background: Echocardiography is a non-invasive, relatively cheap and useful imaging technique for the evaluation of cardiac diseases. The procedure has reliable levels of accuracy. Echocardiography commenced at the Federal medical centre Abeokuta on September 9, 2005.The aim of this study is to report our experience with the procedure, and to define the clinical cases seen in our setting.

Methods: This is a retrospective analysis of a prospectively collected data. Echocardiography was performed using Aloka SSD 1,100 echocardiograph equipped with 2.5-5.0 MHz transducer

Results: During the period of 18 months under review (September 2005-February 2007), 1629 procedures were performed. The reports of 188 echocardiograms were excluded due to poor echo-window, repeated procedure or incomplete report. 1441 reports were reviewed for demographic parameter, indications for the procedure and the main echocardiographic diagnoses.The mean age of the 1441 individuals studied was 54 +/- 14.3 years (15-90). There were 744 men and 697 women. Eight hundred and seventeen subjects (56.7%) had hypertensive heart disease, 53 subjects (3.7%) had rheumatic heart disease while 44(3.0%) had dilated cardiomyopathy. Pericardial diseases, cor-pulmonale, ischaemic heart disease, congenital heart diseases, diabetic heart disease, thyroid heart disease, sickle cell cardiopathy were present in 26(1.8%), 23(1.6%), 9(0.6%), 6(0.4%), 6(0.4%), 6(0.4%), 1(0.1%), and 1(0.1%) respectively. Four hundred and forty nine (31.2%) subjects had normal study.

Conclusion: Hypertensive heart disease was found to be the most prevalent cardiac condition in this study. The relatively frequent diagnoses of rheumatic heart disease, cardiomyopathies and pericardial diseases reflect the impact of infections and infestations on the cardiovascular health of adult Nigerians.We suggest that prevention and treatment of cardiac diseases in our setting should among other things focus on blood pressure control and early treatment of infections causing heart diseases.