oa Central African Journal of Medicine - Mental retardation in Nigerian children

Volume 29, Issue 8
  • ISSN : 0008-9176



In a retrospective study of 116 children with mental retardation seen at the University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital, Enugu, the possible causes could be identified in only 55 (47.1 %) cases. Out of these, 47 (85.5 %) were due to pre and perinatal causes, significantly, Down's syndrome, birth defects and injuries, neonatal jaundice and prematurity. In many developing countries, effective programmes for mental retardation are virtually non-existant. Emphasis should be placed by health planners on its prevention through the improvement of maternal and child health services and the provision of facilities for early diagnosis and assessment.

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