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Prevalence of Tinea capitis infection among primary school children in a rural setting in south-west Nigeria

Olusola Ayanlowo, Ayesha Akinkugbe, Rita Oladele, Mobolanle Balogun
  • Olusola Ayanlowo
    Department of Medicine, Faculty of Clinical Sciences, College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Nigeria
  • Ayesha Akinkugbe
    Department of Medicine, Faculty of Clinical Sciences, College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Nigeria | ahseya68@yahoo.com
  • Rita Oladele
    Department of Microbiology and Department of Basic Medical Sciences, College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Nigeria
  • Mobolanle Balogun
    Department of Community Health and Primary Care, College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Nigeria

Abstract

Dermatophyte infection is a common skin disorder. Tinea capitis, infection of the scalp and hair shaft, is the most common dermatophytosis in children aged between six months and pre-pubertal age. The aim of the study was to determine the prevalence, causative agents and to identify predisposing factors among primary school children in a rural community in Sagamu, Ogun state, Nigeria. This was a descriptive cross sectional study. Interviewer administered questionnaire was used. Following a physical examination, children with a clinical diagnosis of tinea capitis had scalp and hair scrapings for microscopy and culture. Tinea capitis was confirmed in 15.4%. Trichophyton mentagrophyte (51.7%) and Microsporum aoudouinii (20.7%) were the most prevalent organisms in this study. The most common predisposing factors were carrying of objects on the scalp; sharing of hair clippers, scissors, combs, towels and fomites. Low socioeconomic status coupled with overcrowding and poor hygiene was the major determinant of tinea capitis among the children. Tinea capitis remains a common infection among Nigerian school children. Health promotion and health education interventions are recommended to promote good hygiene, better living conditions, early identification and treatment.

Keywords

tinea capitis, school children, public health, Nigeria.

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Submitted: 2013-05-17 17:00:40
Published: 2014-03-17 11:53:12
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Copyright (c) 2014 Olusola Ayanlowo, Ayesha Akinkugbe, Rita Oladele, Mobolanle Balogun

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