A cross-sectional study on morbidity status among school going adolescents in Thiruvallur district, Tamil Nadu
Keywords:Morbidity profile, Adolescents, Rural Tamil Nadu
Background: Adolescents represent about 21.8 percent of India’s population. Various health risks with potentially life-threatening consequences become prominent in this age group. This study was undertaken with the objective to determine the morbidity profile of school going adolescents in Tamil Nadu.
Methods: This descriptive, cross sectional study was planned and conducted from January 2016 to August 2017. The study population included 987 adolescent boys and girls aged between 10 to 19 years studying in high and higher secondary Government schools of Thiruvallur district of Tamil Nadu. Semi-structured questionnaire was used as data collection tool.
Results: The mean age groups of this school going adolescent are 14.2 yrs. In the present study 583 (59%) of the study participants were affected by one or more morbidity condition. Among them, 395 (67.7%) were in the age group 10-14 years and 188 (32.2%) in the age group 15-19 years. 122 (21%) and 461 (79.1%) of male and female were affected respectively. In the present study, fever (21%) was the commonest reported morbidity followed by acute respiratory infection (15.7%) and acute gastrointestinal disease (13. 4%).
Conclusions: This study shows that adolescents are prone to a wide range of morbidity conditions. Apart from respiratory and gastro intestinal diseases, reproductive tract infections and sexual health problems are important morbidities affecting this age group. There is strong need to sensitize health care practitioners at all levels, in both government and private sectors towards health problems in adolescent age groups.
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