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Background and Aim: Malaria is known to be the most widespread tropical disease and a chief cause of morbidity and mortality in Africa. This study was conducted to determine some common complications of falciparum malaria in children, from the perspective of healthcare personnel in Kumasi, Ghana.
Materials and Methods: This questionnaire-based cross-sectional study was carried out at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH) in Kumasi, Ghana. The study population included health care professionals working at the children`s unit of the hospital. About 80 healthcare personnel were recruited to partake in the survey for eliciting views on malaria. Questionnaires were used to capture some symptoms and complications of malaria from the health workers’ point of view.
Results: More than half of the healthcare personnel were males (52.5%), and majority of the participants were medical officers. The study participants elaborated on some common malaria symptoms among children. Fever recorded the highest frequency, represented by 98.8%, followed by general malaise (97.4%), nausea and vomiting (93.8%), chills (78.8%) and headaches (72.5%). Prostration (45.0%), hyperpyrexia (38.75%) and hypoglycemia (13.75%) were the most frequently reported complications by the respondents. Majority of the participants reported cerebral malaria (30.0%), severe anemia (23.75%), acute respiratory distress (17.5%) and repeated generalized convulsions (16.25%) to be the most lethal feature of complicated malaria infection in children. The overwhelming majority of the respondents (90.0%) use the WHO 2014 standard (page2) as guide for determining complicated malaria.
Conclusion: Prostration with hyperpyrexia and hypoglycemia were the most common features of falciparum malaria from the perspective of healthcare personnel in Kumasi, Ghana.