Abstract
PANCYTOPENIA: A CLINICO-HEMATOLOGICAL CROSS-SECTIONAL STUDY IN ASMARA, ERITREA

Amin A. Alamin*, Abiel Berhe, Saud Mohammed and Ghirmay Embaye

ABSTRACT

Introduction: Pancytopenia is a hematological phenomenon that is a challenge in clinical practice. This study aimed at describing the clinico-hematological features of pancytopenic patients in the Eritrean setting. Methodology: This was a cross- sectional study carried out in the National Health Laboratory and Orotta National Referral and Teaching Hospital, Asmara, Eritrea, from December 2015 to November 2017. Seventy-five patients with pancytopenia were included in the study, for which complete blood count, bone marrow aspiration and trephine biopsies were performed. Clinical and hematologic evaluation was conducted. Data entry and analysis was done using Epi-Info 7, Microsoft Excel and SPSS. Results: Out of the 75 cases, there were 49 (65%) adults (age 15 and above) and 26 (35%) children. Males were 41(61%) and females 29 (39%) with male to female ratio of 1.6:1. The median age was 20. The maximum number of patients was in the ages between 15 to 35 years. More than half (56%) of the patients hailed from two zones (Southern and Western regions) of Eritrea. The most common presenting symptoms were fever (80%), generalized body weakness (79%), loss of appetite (55%) and the commonest signs were pallor (93%), splenomegaly (71%) and hepatomegaly (44%). The two most common causes of pancytopenia were found to be hypersplenism (42.7%) and visceral leishmaniasis (29.3%). Conclusion: The commonest causes of pancytopenia were hypersplenism and related tropical infections like visceral leishmaniasis followed by Megaloblastic anemia and Aplastic Anemia.

Keywords: Pancytopenia, Hypersplenism, Visceral Leishmaniasis.


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