Chronic Kidney Failure: Knowledge of Kidney Disease, Perception of Causes and Symptomatology in Uyo, Nigeria


Background: Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is now regarded as a global public health epidemic. Management of chronic kidney disease is often beyond the reach of some patients especially in resource-poor countries of sub-Saharan Africa where patients have to bear the funding. Many Nigerians do not know the functions of the kidney, the symptoms of kidney diseases and the causes of kidney failure. Aims: This study was designed to assess the awareness and knowledge of the kidney and kidney diseases among the people of Akwa Ibom State of Nigeria and their perception of the causes of kidney failure. Method: This was a cross-sectional survey of the Uyo residents in Akwa Ibom State for their knowledge, awareness and perception of CKD. A well structured but simple questionnaire was administered on all medically na?ve participants by trained personnel. Data were analyzed using STATA 10, StataCorp, Texas, USA. Categorical data were presented as frequencies and percentages. A p-value of <0.05 was considered statistically significant. Results: A total of 500 questionnaires were distributed, but 410 were returned. There were 214 (52.2%) females and 196 (47.8%) males with an age range of 18 to 60 years and a mean age of 25.97 ± 8.60 years. About ninety five percent (95.1%) of respondents had heard about CKD with their major source of knowledge being from doctors (29.4%) and media (28.9%). Only 43.3% of respondents knew the correct location of the kidneys. With regards to the knowledge and perception of the causes of kidney failure and body swelling, (11%) agreed that it was because of patient’s wrongdoing, Hypertension (38.9%), False oath taking (20.8%), Witchcraft (12.7%), Diabetes (46.9%), Parent’s wrongdoing (6.4%), Sickle cell disease (47.3%), Familial (19.8%), Herbal medicine (27.9%), Drug abuse (38.9%) and Fake drugs (42.1%). The well educated had better knowledge of hypertension and diabetes as the causes of kidney failure. In conclusion, knowledge of kidney disease is still poor among our populace and more education and public enlightenment is therefore needed.

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Akpan, E. and Ekrikpo, U. (2015) Chronic Kidney Failure: Knowledge of Kidney Disease, Perception of Causes and Symptomatology in Uyo, Nigeria. Open Journal of Nephrology, 5, 91-97. doi: 10.4236/ojneph.2015.53014.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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