OBJECTIVE: Many infections occurring in area of Sub-Saharan Africa are associated with more or less serious neurologic symptoms or complications. The aim of this study was to assess the incidence of selected infectious diseases in the equatorial part of Uganda and Kenya and to monitor potential neurological complications of these infections.
METHODS: The study was performed for May - August 2008. Patients suffering from cerebral malaria, AIDS, meningitis, typhoid, tuberculosis (TB), syphilis, leprosy, and trypanosomiasis patients were enrolled. Besides of standard examination, lumbar puncture (LP) and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) examination was performed, and the occurrence of neurological disorders and sequellae was recorded and assessed.
RESULTS: Altogether 288 patients with neurological manifestation were enrolled. Malaria was the most prevalent disease in this study (102 cases, 35.42%), followed by typhoid (47 cases, 16.2%) and meningitis (38 cases, 13.2%). Leprosy and trypanosomiasis were only rarely detected (2.3% and 1.4%, respectively).
CONCLUSION: In malaria and HIV hyper-endemic area of rural Uganda, cerebral malaria is the leading tropical neuroinfection. Also, meningitis is still frequent probably due to insufficient access to vaccination.