Respiratory diseases morbidity and mortality among adults attending a tertiary hospital in Nigeria

J Bras Pneumol. 2009 Aug;35(8):745-52. doi: 10.1590/s1806-37132009000800005.


Objective: To determine the morbidity and mortality related to respiratory diseases among adults attending a tertiary-care hospital in Nigeria.

Methods: We carried out a retrospective study of 183 adult patients (> 15 years of age), diagnosed with respiratory diseases between November of 2006 and October of 2008 at the Federal Medical Centre in Ido-Ekiti, Nigeria.

Results: Of the 183 patients enrolled in the study, 78 (42.6%) were male and 105 (57.4%) were female, the male: female ratio being 1:1.4. Respiratory diseases were predominant in the 25-44 year age bracket (37.2%) and lower socioeconomic class (81.4%). Pulmonary TB was the leading cause of morbidity (in 42.1%), followed by asthma (in 17.5%) and pneumonia (in 15.3%). Lung cancer was uncommon (in only 0.6%). Pulmonary TB was the leading cause of hospitalization for respiratory disease (in 32%). Pulmonary TB, asthma, pneumonia and pleural pathologies were more common in women, whereas COPD was more common in men. The most common comorbidity was HIV infection (in 11.5%). The overall mean length of hospital stay was 14 days. Overall mortality was 8.7%; 50% of the deaths were attributed to pulmonary TB, 25% were attributed to pleural disease, 12.5% were attributed to pneumonia, and 6.25% were attributed to acute exacerbation of COPD. Mortality was higher in women and in the 25-44 year age bracket.

Conclusions: Pulmonary TB, asthma and pneumonia were the leading causes of respiratory disease-related morbidity. Pulmonary TB was the leading cause of respiratory disease-related mortality among the adult Nigerians evaluated. Therefore, these conditions should be given higher priority in patient care. In addition, antiretroviral therapy should be readily accessible and affordable to HIV-infected individuals.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Distribution
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Asthma / mortality
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Nigeria / epidemiology
  • Pneumonia / mortality
  • Prevalence
  • Pulmonary Disease, Chronic Obstructive / mortality
  • Respiratory Tract Diseases / classification
  • Respiratory Tract Diseases / mortality*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sex Distribution
  • Tuberculosis, Pulmonary / mortality
  • Young Adult