Implementing haemophilia care in Senegal, West Africa



Despite significant progres on haemophilia care in developed world, this disease remains unknown in many sub-Saharan African countries. The objectives of this article were to report Senegalese experience on the management of haemophilia care through 18 years of follow-up. This cohort study included 140 patients (127 haemophilia A, 13 haemophilia B), followed in Dakar's haemophilia treatment centre from 1995 to 2012. Our study reported a prevalence of 2.3/100 000 male births, accounting for 11.6% of what is expected in Senegal. From the period 1995–2003 to 2004–2012, significant progress was seen including 67.9% increase in new patient's identification, 11.3 years reduction in mean age at diagnosis (from 15.5 to 4.2 years), lower mortality rate (from 15.3% to 6.8%) and age at death evolved from 6.5 to 23.3 years. Of the 50 haemophilia A patients who were tested for inhibitor presence, 10 were positive (eight severe and two moderate) that is prevalence of 20%. All patients were low responders since inhibitor titre was between 1.5 and 3.8 BU. Disabilities were seen in 36.5% of patients above 20 years old who had musculoskeletal sequels and 39% had no scholar or professional activities in our setting. Implementing haemophilia care in sub-Saharan Africa is a great challenge as this disease is not yet counted in national health problems in many countries. Lessons learned from this study show a significant improvement in diagnosis and prognosis parameters. This emphasizes the needs to set up such follow-up initiatives and to enhance medical and lay cooperation for better results.