Original research

Knowledge of acute respiratory infection in under-fives and homebased practices by their caregivers in an urban community in southern Nigeria

W O Osarogiagbon, A R Isara


Background. Acute respiratory infection (ARI) is a common respiratory problem in Nigeria and spans a spectrum of infections, from the common cold to pneumonia. ARI is the leading cause of mortality in children under 5 years of age, with the majority of deaths occurring in developing countries. 

Objective. To assess the knowledge of and the home-based practices used by caregivers of under-fives during episodes of ARI. 

Methods. A descriptive cross-sectional study was conducted among an urban community in Edo State, Nigeria. Participants were selected using a multistage sampling technique. A pretested researcher-administered questionnaire was used for data collection. 

Results. Of the 346 participating caregivers, the majority had poor knowledge of ARI-related aspects and only some respondents showed good or fair knowledge. Specifically, only 12 respondents (3.5%) showed good knowledge of ARI symptoms and only nine (2.6%) showed good knowledge of the danger signs associated with ARIs. The majority of respondents (n=163; 81.1%) used shea butter oil (orioyo) as a home remedy. 

Conclusion. Despite a high level of awareness of ARI among caregivers in the sampled community, a poor level of knowledge of the symptoms, causes and danger signs of ARI was observed. Various homemade preparations and remedies were used to treat ARIs.

Authors' affiliations

W O Osarogiagbon, Department of Child Health, School of Medicine, University of Benin, Benin City, Nigeria

A R Isara, Department of Community Health, School of Medicine, University of Benin, Benin City, Nigeria

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Cite this article

African Journal of Thoracic and Critical Care Medicine 2018;24(4):127. DOI:10.7196/AJTCCM.2018.v24i4.188

Article History

Date submitted: 2018-12-18
Date published: 2018-12-20

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