Acute pancreatitis at a tertiary hospital in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia: A 4-year retrospective study

  • Amanuel Dansa
  • Berhanu Kotisso
Keywords: acute pancreatitis, acute abdomen, obesity, gallstones, laparotomy, Ethiopia


BACKGROUND: Acute pancreatitis is not uncommon in our setting but there is no study on the hospital incidence and treatment outcomes in our country. The study attempts to determine the incidence, cause and outcome of acute pancreatitis in Menelik II referral hospital Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, from September 1, 2012 – August 31, 2016.

METHODS: A four-year cross-sectional retrospective study was conducted to review acute pancreatitis in Menelik II referral hospital Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The  data  was  collected using structured and pretested questionnaire by trained data collectors and checked for its completeness, then entered, edited, cleaned and analyzed  using  SPSS software  version 20  for  determination  of  frequency, percentage and cross-tabulation with different variables; “95%” confidence interval and P-value “< 0.05“ were used to examine the association between dependent and independent variables.

RESULTS: There were a total of 64 acute pancreatitis patients recorded in logbooks of medical, surgical wards and ICU; of which 54 patients’ charts were retrieved. This comprised 0.23% of the total 27,525 emergency patients treated during the same period. 61% of the patients were males while the rest 39% were females. The age of the patients is in the range of 20-67 years with a mean age of 37.8± 4.8 years. The leading etiologies were alcohol (44.4%), gallstone (24%), and obesity 5.6%. In the remaining 22.2%, the cause was not identified. 87% of the patients were treated conservatively while the rest 13% underwent emergency laparotomy for unsettled diagnosis of acute abdomen. The mortality was 11.1%.

CONCLUSIONS: Acute pancreatitis is not uncommon in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Alcohol and Gall stone disease are the two leading causes. Public awareness regarding aetiology may reduce the incidence. Intensive care units should be strengthened to properly handle severe cases to reduce the mortality rate.

Original Research