School of Nursing and Midwifery, East Africa
Introduction: Despite a reduction in poor outcomes in recent decades, spontaneous subarachnoid haemorrhage (SAH) remains associated with severe disability and high mortality rates. The exact extent of these outcomes is however unknown in Africa. This study aimed to determine the mortality and functional outcomes of patients with SAH in Kenya.
Methods: We conducted a retrospective multicentre cross-sectional study involving patients admitted with SAH to three referral hospitals in Nairobi. All patients with a confirmed (primary) discharge diagnosis of first-time SAH between January 2009 and November 2017 were included (n = 158). Patients who had prior head trauma or cerebrovascular disease (n = 53) were excluded. Telephone interviews were conducted with surviving patients or their next of kin to assess out-of-hospital outcomes (including functional outcomes) based on modified Rankin Scale (mRS) scores. Chi-square and Fisher’s exact tests were used to assess associations between mortality and functional outcomes and sample characteristics.
Results: Of the 158 patients sampled, 38 (24.1%) died in hospital and 42 (26.6%) died within 1 month. In total, 87 patients were discharged home and followed-up in this study, of which 72 reported favourable functional outcomes (mRS ≤2). This represented 45.6% of all patients who presented alive, pointing to high numbers of unfavourable outcomes post SAH in Kenya.
Conclusions: Mortality following SAH remains high in Kenya. Patients who survive the initial ictus tend to do well after treatment, despite resource constraints.
Limitations: The study findings should be interpreted with caution because of unavoidable limitations in the primary data. These include its retrospective nature, the high number of patients lost to follow up, missing records and diagnoses, and/or possible miscoding of cases.
(2019). Mortality and functional outcomes after a spontaneous subarachnoid haemorrhage: A retrospective multicentre cross-sectional study in Kenya. PLoS ONE, 14(6), 1-14.
Available at: https://ecommons.aku.edu/eastafrica_fhs_sonam/259
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