Burden attributable to childhood and adolescent primary headache disorders in Lusaka and Ndola school children aged 7 - 17 years.

Thumbnail Image
Kawatu, Nfwama
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
The University of Zambia
Headache is a common complaint in the paediatric and adult populations. However, the prevalence, types and effects on the quality of life of the children that suffer from headache is not known. This study assessed the prevalence and burden of primary headache disorders in children and adolescents. The data collected and analysed produced a preliminary report of an ongoing study. This was a cross sectional study, conducted over a 6-month period which targeted participants aged 7-17 years in Lusaka and Ndola schools. It was conducted using a standardized questionnaire that was administered with the guidance of the principal investigator for ages 7-11 years and by self-administration for ages 12-17 years. Questions of interest included the prevalence, duration, intensity and frequency of any headache. Lost school days and parental work days highlighted the quality of life of these children in general. The data was analysed using a validated algorithm of classification of headache which is based on the International Classification of Headache Disorders III. The 1 year prevalence of headache in general was at 87.3% of the study population. Probable migraine was most common at 44.5% followed by migraine 19.6%. Girls (68.6%) suffered more migraine; boys displayed a high prevalence in tension type headache (39.9%), followed by probable migraine headache at 39.9%. A reduction in the quality of life was significantly associated with a longer duration of headache days, migraine headache and probable migraine headache whereas there was no significant association with other headache types. The prevalence of primary headache disorders in Zambia is significantly high at 873% with highest prevalences of migraine headache in girls and tension type headache in boys. The quality of life was not significantly altered in these children that suffered headache.
Thesis of Masters of Medicine in Paediatrics and Child Health.