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1.  Retinopathy of Prematurity in Port Harcourt, Nigeria 
ISRN Ophthalmology  2014;2014:481527.
Purpose. With many preterm babies now surviving as a result of improvement in neonatal care in Nigeria, the incidence of visual impairment/blindness as a result of retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) may rise. We describe our findings after screening starts for the first time in a 15-year-old special care baby unit so as to establish the incidence and risk factors for developing ROP. Methods. A prospective study carried out at the Special Care Baby Unit (SCBU) and Pediatric Outpatient Clinics of the University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital between January 1 and October 31, 2012. Fifty-three preterm babies (of 550 neonates admitted within the study period) delivered before 32 completed weeks and weighing less than 1500 g were included in the study following informed consent and the main outcome measure was the development of any stage of ROP. Results. Mean gestational age at birth was 28.98 ± 1.38 weeks. Mean birth weight was 1411 ± 128 g. Out of 550 babies admitted at SCBU, 87 of 100 preterms survived with 53 included in study. Twenty-five (47.2%) had different degrees of ROP with prevalence found to be 47.2%. Prevalence was higher (75%) in babies weighing <1300 g and those delivered before 30-week gestation (58%). Twenty-one (84%) had stage 1 no plus disease and 3 (12%) had stage 2 no plus disease. Only 1 (4%) had threshold disease in Zone 1. None had disease at stage 4 or 5 or AP-ROP. Receiving supplemental oxygen (χ2 = 6.17; P = 0.01), presence of sepsis (χ2 = 7.47; P = 0.006), multiple blood transfusions (χ2 = 5.11; P = 0.02), and delivery by caesarian section (χ2 = 4.22; P = 0.04) were significantly associated with development of ROP. There were no significant differences with gender, apneic spells, jaundice, or phototherapy. Conclusions and Relevance. All live infants with ROP were noted to regress spontaneously in this study. Though it may not be cost effective to acquire treatment facilities at the moment (the only child with treatable disease died), facilities for screening preterm infants displaying high risk features may be essential as smaller babies are saved.
PMCID: PMC3932233  PMID: 24649375
2.  Prospective evaluation of the usefulness of C-reactive protein in the diagnosis of neonatal sepsis in a sub-Saharan African region 
Sepsis is one of the most common causes of morbidity and mortality in the newborn. Early diagnosis and treatment is vital to improve outcome. The present study was therefore carried out to determine the usefulness of C-reactive protein (CRP) for evaluation of neonatal sepsis in Port Harcourt, Nigeria in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Four hundred and twenty neonates with clinical suspicion of sepsis were prospectively studied over a 6 month period. Blood was obtained from each subject recruited for the qualitative estimation of CRP. Blood culture was used as gold standard for diagnosis of NNS.
Of 420 neonates studied, 196 (46.7%) had positive CRP while 181 (43.1%) had positive blood culture. The sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive values of CRP were 74.0%, 74.1%, 68.4% and 79.0% respectively.
The qualitative method of estimating CRP which is cheap and rapid has moderate sensitivity, specificity and negative predictive value.
PMCID: PMC3436619  PMID: 22958461
Neonatal sepsis; C-reactive protein; Sub-Saharan Africa
3.  Sirenomelia in a Nigerian triplet: a case report 
Sirenomelia, also known as mermaid syndrome, is a very rare fatal congenital abnormality in which the legs are fused together, giving them the appearance of a mermaid's tail. It is commonly associated with abnormal kidney development, genital and rectal abnormalities. A handful of cases have been reported in other parts of the world, however, no cases have previously been reported in a Nigerian neonate. To the best of our knowledge, we believe that this is the first case reported from West Africa and in a triplet.
Case presentation
A 16-hour-old baby boy, the second of a set of Nigerian triplets, presented to our facility with fusion of the entire lower limbs, imperforate anus, indiscernible genital structures, single umbilical artery and a neural tube defect. His parents were from the Hausa ethnic group and not related.
Sirenomelia has not been previously described in a set of triplets, and it is hoped that this report from West Africa will give information about the non-racial predilection of this condition.
PMCID: PMC3179757  PMID: 21888626

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