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Pan Afr Med J. 2017 Mar 3;26:125. doi: 10.11604/pamj.2017.26.125.10954. eCollection 2017.

Dermatology in Ghana: a retrospective review of skin disease at the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital Dermatology Clinic.

Author information

1
New York University School of Medicine, New York, USA.
2
University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine, Chicago, USA.
3
Department of Psychiatry, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, USA.
4
Dermatology Unit, Department of Medicine, Korle Bu Teaching Hospital, Ghana.
5
The Ronald Perelman Department of Dermatology, New York University School of Medicine, USA.
6
Dermatology Unit, Department of Medicine & Therapeutics, University of Ghana School of Medicine and Dentistry, Ghana.
7
Department of Dermatology, Weill Cornell Medical College, New York, USA.

Abstract

INTRODUCTION:

Ghana is currently developing its provision of dermatology services. Epidemiologic studies of the skin diseases seen by Ghanaian dermatologists are needed to guide these efforts. We aimed to describe the skin conditions seen by and management practices of Ghanaian dermatologists in a specialized clinic.

METHODS:

We conducted a chart review of new patients presenting to the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital dermatology clinic during 2014.

RESULTS:

Among the 529 patients studied, 700 discrete diagnoses were made. The most commonly diagnosed skin conditions were infections (24.6%) and dermatitis (24.6%); atopic dermatitis (8.4%), acne vulgaris (5.3%) and scabies (5.1%) were the most common specific diagnoses. Among infants, children, and adolescents, the most common diagnosis was atopic dermatitis (31.7%, 30.0%, and 14.9%, respectively). Acne vulgaris (12.0%) was the most common skin condition diagnosed in young adults. Irritant contact dermatitis (6.9%) was most common among adults. Lichen planus (9.9%) was the most commonly diagnosed skin condition in the senior population. Diagnoses made by dermatologists differed from the referral diagnosis documented by primary care providers for 65.8% of patients. The most frequently recommended treatments were antihistamines (47.8%) and topical steroids (38.4%). Only 18 diagnostic biopsies were performed.

CONCLUSION:

Our study summarizes the skin diseases seen and management practices of Ghanaian dermatologists in a specialized clinic at a large public teaching hospital. The results of this study can help to guide future dermatology education and development efforts in Ghana.

KEYWORDS:

Dermatology; Ghana; atopic dermatitis; scabies

PMID:
28533848
PMCID:
PMC5429409
DOI:
10.11604/pamj.2017.26.125.10954
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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