|PREVALENCE OF CHEST SYMPTOMS AND ACTION TAKEN BY
SYMPTOMATICS IN A RURAL COMMUNITY
|Radha Narayan, Susy Thomas, S Pramila Kumari, S Prabhakar,
AN Ramaprakash, T Suresh & N Srikantaramu: Indian J TB 1976,
A study was conducted in 55 randomly selected villages
of Nelamangala taluk, Bangalore district in 1975 (1) to estimate
the prevalence of symptoms in the general population during the
two months prior to the epidemiological survey, (2) to study the
nature of action taken by these symptomatics and, (3) to find out
through sputum examination as to how many of them suffer from pulmonary
tuberculosis. The entire population was interviewed and sputum was
collected from those aged five years and above having symptoms continuously
for seven days and more. A coverage of 98.8% was obtained. Symptomatics
among the directly interviewed were almost double (32.3%) of those
who had to be interviewed by proxy (16.8%). Proportion of symptomatics
were higher in the age groups twenty years and above. 24.8% were
symptomatic during the reference period of two months and 16.7%
had symptoms on the day of interview. ll.1% were found to have chest
symptoms. The prevalence rate of tuberculosis was found to be 21
per 1000, (for males 28 and females 14). Cough was the most prevalent
and the symptom of longest duration.
The findings suggest that symptoms questioning
should focus more on cough and its combination with other symptoms.
Symptoms questioning as a tool to detect cases has less potential
than X-ray, but data reveal that leading questions can elicit more
information on symptoms and action taking. The manner of action
taking was the same for chest symptoms as for other symptoms and
the proportion taking action is also the same for males and females.
Government health facilities are found to be the most important
source of relief, indigenous medicine having some importance marked
second and the private practitioners ranking only third.
|KEY WORDS: SYMPTOMS, ACTION TAKING, RURAL POPULATION.