Surveillance on pediatric bacterial meningitis in Gondar University Hospital, Ethiopia from 2012 to 2021: Retrospective analysis

Mehretie Kokeb
a:1:{s:5:"en_US";s:32:"Pediatrician,Associate Professor";}
  • Articles
  • Submited: April 16, 2022
  • Published: January 2, 2023


Introduction: Acute Bacterial meningitis is still a major cause of death in under-five children. Surveillance on Pediatric Bacterial Meningitis has been set up by the World Health Organization to generate data on vaccine preventable causes of Meningitis in under-five children. Ethiopia is one of the countries conducting the surveillance and Gondar University Hospital is one of the sentinel surveillance sites. In this study we described the epidemiological data on Bacterial meningitis in under-five children at Gondar University Hospital from 2012-2021.

Methods:  Data were extracted directly from Gondar University Hospital surveillance database collected from under-five children admitted to the Hospital with suspected meningitis from January 1st, 2012 to December 31st, 2021. Socio-demographic and clinical characteristics were collected using standard pretested questioners. All under-five children with suspected meningitis over the 10-years period were included and descriptive statistics like frequency, percentage, mean, median and standard deviations were used for the characteristics of under-five Children with Suspected Bacterial Meningitis.

Results: In this study, a total of 4311 under-five admitted with suspected bacterial meningitis from 2012 to 2021 were enrolled.  The majority, 71% of suspected meningitis were reported in infants. The mortality rate in suspected meningitis during the study period was 1%. The majority (92.4 %) had fever at presentation followed by seizure (62.7 %), altered consciousness (58.9 %) and bulged fontanel in 48.3 %, respectively. The commonest bacteria identified by CSF culture and Polymerase Chain Reaction was Streptococcus pneumonia (SPN). There was a reduction of confirmed meningitis cases from 2012 to 2021 (26 cases in 2012 and 6cases in 2021).

Conclusions:  Streptococcus pneumoniae was the commonest cause of PBM. Bacterial detection by culture was low which showed that Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test should be encouraged to improve bacterial detection.


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How to Cite
Kokeb, M. (2023). Surveillance on pediatric bacterial meningitis in Gondar University Hospital, Ethiopia from 2012 to 2021: Retrospective analysis. Ethiopian Medical Journal, 61(1). Retrieved from

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