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Acute respiratory tract infections in children under 5 years of age in Upper Egypt

Ekram M. Abdel Khalek, Doaa M. Abdel-Salam.

Background: Acute respiratory infection (ARI) is a serious problem that causes four and a half million deaths among children every year, the overwhelming majority occurring in developing countries. Untreated ARIs often lead to pneumonia, which is more serious and causes 15% of under five deaths in Egypt. The objectives of the present study were to identify the prevalence of ARIs in children under 5 years of age in Upper Egypt and its determinants.
Methods: Secondary analysis was done in the present study based on data sets of Egypt Demographic Health Survey (EDHS), 2008.
Results: The present study involved 4,745 children under 5 years of age living in Upper Egypt Governorates who included in EDHS, 2008. The mean age of the studied children was 28.27 months. It was found that 18.8% of the children had cough during the two weeks period before the survey. Medical consultations were sought from health care providers among 90% of children. Nearly two thirds of the children were given any drugs. Cough drugs and oral antibiotics were given most frequently. Also, 30% of children did not receive any medical treatment .Children aged 6-23 months and male children were affected most likely with ARIs. Immunization status of the studied children showed significant association with ARIs.
Conclusions: Children aged 6-23 months and male children were affected most likely with ARIs. Paediatricians and general practitioners should take their role in proper counselling of caregivers on the proper child care at home.

Key words: Acute respiratory tract infections, Children under 5 years, Egypt

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