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Listeriosis Knowledge and Attitude among Pregnant Women Attending a Tertiary Health Institution, South Western Nigeria

Emelda E. Chukwu, Francisca O. Nwaokorie
Advances in Infectious Diseases , Volume 10, pp 64-75; doi:10.4236/aid.2020.102006

Abstract: Background: Listeriosis affects immunosuppressed individual’s especially pregnant women. Maternal infections are usually mild for the woman, but may have devastating effects on the unborn child, including miscarriage, stillbirth, preterm labour and serious neonatal illness. WHO recommends that pregnant women should be educated to avoid foods with high risk of contamination. This study seeks to evaluate knowledge and practices predisposing to listeria infections during pregnancy. Methodology: This is a cross-sectional study on pregnant women, attending the antenatal clinic of Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH) using semi structured questionnaires. The knowledge score of participants was collated and analyzed using SPSS version 26. Results: The mean age of the participants was 32.07 ± 5.6 years. Forty-three (30.7%) women have had previous miscarriages with the mean no of miscarriage of 1.54. Out of 147 participants, only 20 (13.6%) admitted having heard of listeriosis while 127 (86.4%) had never heard of listeriosis and none of the participants has ever been tested for listeriosis. The Overall knowledge score was poor, and this was irrespective of age and duration of pregnancy. However, women with graduate and/or postgraduate degrees were more likely to have heard of Listeriosis (X2 = 10.88, P = 0.028). Conclusion: Our study shows a low level of knowledge about this food-borne illness, which can lead to severe illnesses in pregnant women and their unborn child. It is necessarily to educate pregnant women on the risk of listeriosis. This would be a key factor in creating and implementing accurate measures of prevention and control.
Keywords: Listeria monocytogenes / Nigeria / fetal death / pregnant women / listeriosis

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