Original Research

Epidemiologic Features of Acute Appendicitis in A Tropical African Population

Bamidele Johnson Alegbeleye1, Charles Adeyinka Adisa1, Huseyin Keskin2
1Department of Surgery, St. Elizabeth Catholic General Hospital, Kumbo-Nso Bui Division, CameroonRepublic
2Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Medical Park Hospital, Tarsus, Mersin, Turkey

Worldwide Medicine 2019; 1(6): 202-211 | DOI: 10.5455/ww.60780      PDF


Background: The verifiable range of existence of appendicitis in Cameroon and the enormity of etiological factors in appendicitis are unknown.
Objective: To describe the epidemiology of acute appendicitis in the northwestern region of Cameroon.
Methods: A retrospective observational population-based cohort study was conducted to evaluate the demographic features, incidence and seasonal variation of acute appendicitis using the medical database of St Elizabeth Catholic General Hospital, Shisong in the northwestern region of Cameroon from January 2006 to January 2016. We assessed confirmed histopathological specimens of appendicitis against sociodemographic data of the patients.
Results: A total of 772 out of 784 cases of appendicitis documented were confirmed histologically from the hospital records. Fifty-two percent were males and 48% were females. The appendicitis cases were made up 0.94%, 1.53%, and 2.86% of the total hospital admissions in 2006, 2007, and 2010, respectively. There has been an increasing incidence in both sexes almost in a similar pattern. The overall mean age was 28.64 ± SD 10.12 years with 6% below the age of ten and 1.5% above 60 years. The highest incidence in males and females occurred in the second and third decades, respectively. Incidences were higher during the rainy season (April to September) 68%, P < 0.05), with peaks from June to August, when 42.5% of all cases presented.
Conclusion: Appendicitis is relatively rare in northwest Cameroon. The rising incidence rate of the disease in both sexes in this region may be due to the change to a Western lifestyle. The elevated level of occurrence of infections and allergens from pollens during the rainy season may be responsible for greater incidence of appendicitis.

Keywords: Age distribution; Appendicitis; Incidence; Seasonal variation; Sex distribution; Trends.