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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 8  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 1359-1364

Malaria in pregnancy: A community-based study on the knowledge, perception, and prevention among Nigerian women

Department of Community Health and Primary Care, College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Lagos, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Ifeoma P Okafor
Department of Community Health and Primary Care, College of Medicine, University of Lagos, PMB 12003, Lagos
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jfmpc.jfmpc_295_18

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Background: Malaria accounts for approximately 1 million deaths annually and about 300,000 deaths in Nigeria alone. Pregnant women and their unborn babies are particularly vulnerable to the adverse consequences of malaria. This study assessed the knowledge, perception, and preventive practices for malaria in pregnancy (MiP) among women in Lagos, Nigeria. Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional, descriptive study design was adopted. A total of 422 respondents were selected using multistage sampling technique. Data were collected using a structured, interviewer-administered questionnaire in the first quarter of 2016. Analysis was done with Epi Info™ 7 software with level of significance set at P < 0.05. Results: All respondents were aware of MiP, and almost all the respondents (96.2%) were aware that malaria is caused by infected mosquito bite. Majority (89.3%) of the respondents registered for antenatal care in their last pregnancy, but 56.6% did so in the second trimester. A little over half (55.5%) had good knowledge of MiP. There was poor knowledge of the complications of MiP in mothers, with 27% unaware of any complications. Majority (51.6%) of them did not know the complications of malaria in the fetus. Better educated respondents had statistically significant better knowledge of MiP (P = 0.001). Only two-fifths of the respondents (39.8%) agreed that MiP can lead to death of the fetus. Most (41.9%) used insecticide spray and coils in the prevention of MiP, whereas only 36.9% used intermittent preventive treatment. Only 24.1% used insecticide-treated nets and almost 20% used no form of prevention. Conclusion: Respondents' knowledge, perception, and preventive practices for MiP were not satisfactory. Public health education on MiP should be intensified at the community level in order to improve knowledge and prevention and also to correct misconceptions.

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