Original Research

Specialist physician knowledge of chronic kidney disease: A comparison of internists and family physicians in West Africa

Emmanuel I. Agaba, Patricia A. Agaba, Musa Dankyau, Maxwell O. Akanbi, Comfort A. Daniyam, Edith N. Okeke, Antonios H. Tzamaloukas
African Journal of Primary Health Care & Family Medicine | Vol 4, No 1 | a319 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/phcfm.v4i1.319 | © 2012 Emmanuel I. Agaba, Patricia A. Agaba, Musa Dankyau, Maxwell O. Akanbi, Comfort A. Daniyam, Edith N. Okeke, Antonios H. Tzamaloukas | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 09 June 2011 | Published: 29 May 2012

About the author(s)

Emmanuel I. Agaba, Department of Medicine, Jos University Teaching Hospital, Jos,, Nigeria
Patricia A. Agaba, Department of Medicine, Jos University Teaching Hospital, Jos,, Nigeria
Musa Dankyau, Department of Family Medicine, Bingham University Teaching Hospital, Nigeria
Maxwell O. Akanbi, Department of Medicine, Jos University Teaching Hospital, Jos,, Nigeria
Comfort A. Daniyam, Department of Medicine, Jos University Teaching Hospital, Jos, Nigeria
Edith N. Okeke, Department of Medicine, Jos University Teaching Hospital, Jos, Nigeria
Antonios H. Tzamaloukas, Renal Section, New Mexico Veterans Affairs Health Care System Department of Medicine, University of New Mexico School of Medicine, Albuquerque, United States


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Abstract

Background: Postgraduate training is aimed at equipping the trainee with the necessary skills to practise as an expert. Non-nephrology specialist physicians render the bulk of pre-end-stage renal disease care for patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD). We sought to ascertain the knowledge of CKD amongst non-nephrology specialist physicians who serve as trainers and examiners for a training, accrediting and certifying body in postgraduate medicine in West Africa. We also compared the knowledge of family physicians and non-nephrology internists.

Methods: Self-administered questionnaires were distributed to non-nephrology specialist physicians who serve as examiners for the West African College of Physicians.

Results: Only 19 (27.5%) of the respondents were aware of the Kidney Disease Outcomes Quality Initiatives guidelines for CKD management. Twenty five (36.2%) of the respondents had adequate knowledge of CKD. There was no significant difference in the proportion of family physicians and non-nephrology internists who had adequate knowledge of CKD (27.3% vs. 40.4% respectively; p = 0.28). Hypertension and diabetes mellitus were identified by all of the physicians as risk factors for CKD. Non-nephrology internists more frequently identified systemic lupus erythematosus as a risk factor for CKD, urinalysis with microscopy as a laboratory test for CKD evaluation, and bone disease as a complication of CKD than family physicians.

Conclusion: There is a lack of adequate CKD knowledge amongst non-nephrology specialist physicians, since many of them are unaware of the CKD management guidelines. Educational efforts are needed to improve the knowledge of CKD amongst non-nephrology specialist physicians. Guidelines on CKD need to be widely disseminated amongst these physicians.


Keywords

Chronic kidney disease; family physicians, internal medicine specialists, West Africa

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