Routine haemoglobin electrophoresis screening in day case herniotomy in Nigerian children: Is it evidence-based?

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Ademuyiwa, AO
Bode, CO
Desalu, I
Elebute, OA
Olatosi, JO
Temiye, E
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Background: To determine the prevalence of haemoglobinopathies in children who require day case herniotomy in our centre and ascertain if routine screening is necessary in all patients who require herniotomy. Materials and Methods: A 12-month retrospective analysis of patients requiring herniotomy in our centre. Data including age, sex, diagnosis, haemoglobin electrophoresis status, surgical outcome and hospital stay were analysed. Results: Ninety-five patients had complete records. There were 84 boys and 11 girls. M:F ratio: 7.6:1. The mean age was 3.2 ± 0.6 years. Fifty-five point eight per cent of the patients had right inguinal hernias while 35.8% had left inguinal hernias. Eight patients (8.4%) had bilateral inguinal hernias. Twentysix patients (27.4%) had haemoglobinopathies while 69 patients (72.6%) had homozygous Haemoglobin A. The Sickle Cell trait (HbAS) was found in 22 patients (23.2%) while the HbAC was found in three patients (3.2%). One patient (1.1%) had Sickle Cell disease (Haemoglobin SS). He had had blood transfusion and previous history of jaundice. All patients survived and all patients were discharged on the day of surgery (mean hospital stay: 4hrs (range: 2.5 hrs–12 hrs)) except the patient with Sickle Cell disease who was admitted a day before surgery and discharged a day after the operation. Conclusion: One in four children coming for day case herniotomy in our centre had the Sickle Cell trait while only 1% had the Sickle Cell disease. These findings are in keeping with the prevalence in the Nigerian population. Routine screening may not be necessary for all patients coming for herniotomy in our centre. Clear indication(s) should be outlined for screening.
Haemoglobin electrophoresis, paediatric day case surgery, routine screening
Ademuyiwa AO, Bode CO, Desalu I, Elebute OA, Olatosi JO, Temiye E. Routine haemoglobin electrophoresis screening in day case herniotomy in Nigerian children: Is it evidence-based?. Niger Med J 2013;54:408-10.