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Year : 2016  |  Volume : 13  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 193-198

Diabetes mellitus: Identifying the knowledge gaps and risk factors among adolescents attending a public school in Lagos State

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

Correspondence Address:
Lovelyn Otammi Ubangha
Department of Community Health and Primary Care, College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Lagos
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2468-6859.192302

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Background: The prevalence of diabetes mellitus (DM), a noncommunicable disease (NCD) in adolescents, is on the rise worldwide; therefore, knowledge which facilitates prevention and early detection is important. The objective of this study was to determine the knowledge of DM and self-reported risk factors among adolescents in a senior secondary school, in Surulere, Lagos State. Methodology: This was a cross-sectional descriptive study of 144 male and 106 female senior secondary students with a mean age of 15.2 ΁ 1.3 years. Respondents were selected through multistage sampling technique. A structured pretested questionnaire was used to collect data. Epi Info 7.1.5 was used for data analysis and the level of statistical significance was set at 5%. Results obtained were presented with the use of frequency tables. Results: Two out of three respondents had heard of DM. Among those who were aware of the condition, 64.9% knew it referred to abnormally high blood glucose. Only (10.9%) knew it was a lifelong condition and less than a third (26.7%) knew the measurement of blood glucose with a device for the screening test. Less than 30% considered obesity, family history, diet, and physical inactivity as risk factors. Their main source of information was the mass media. Overall, 46% of respondents had good knowledge of DM. As regards the presence of lifestyle behavior/risk factor for DM/NCDs in the respondents, 8.4% of the respondents had a family history of DM, had consumed alcohol (28.8%), smoked tobacco (4.8%), and were overweight/obese (5.2%). Conclusion: Two-thirds were aware of DM, of which over half had inadequate knowledge of DM despite the existence of some risk factors. There should, therefore, be an inclusion of NCD education in the curriculum of secondary school students.

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