Skin disorders among male primary school children in Al Hassa, Saudi Arabia: Prevalence and socio-demographic correlates - A comparison of urban and rural populations

T. T. Amin, A. Ali, F. Kaliyadan

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19 Citations (Scopus)


Introduction: Skin diseases are common among school children worldwide. However, limited information is available about the socioeconomic correlates that contribute to their development among school children in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA). Objectives: to identify the prevalent transmissible and non-transmissible skin disorders among male primary school children in Al Hassa, KSA, and to detect possible socio-demographic correlates implicated in their development. Methods: In this cross-sectional study a total of 1337 male primary school children were selected from urban and rural schools in Al Hassa, Saudi Arabia by a multistage sampling method. Socio-demographic and housing conditions data were collected through a self-administered parents'/guardians' questionnaire. A personal interview with the child established personal hygiene habits; this was followed by clinical dermatological screening. Results: The prevalence of transmissible skin disorders was 27.2% (CI=24.8-29.6); solitary transmissible skin disorders were diagnosed in 7.8%, while 19.4% had multiple disorders. Common dermatoses identified included superficial infections (fungal, bacterial and viral), eczematous dermatosis, and infestations (scabies/pediculosis). Logistic regression revealed that large family size was a positive predictor for pediculosis and fungal infections, and rural residence was a positive predictor for pediculosis; however, higher maternal educational status might be protective against the development of both lesions. Frequent showering and high family income were both negative predictors for the development of infectious (transmissible) dermatoses. The prevalence of transmissible dermatoses was higher in rural compared with urban school children, while the prevalence of most non-transmissible dermatoses did not show a significant difference between urban and rural populations. Conclusion: Both transmissible and non-transmissible skin disorders were frequently encountered among male primary school children in Al Hassa, Saudi Arabia. Both socio-demographic and hygiene correlates play a significant role in the development of these disorders.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1517
Number of pages15
JournalRural and Remote Health
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 28 Feb 2011
Externally publishedYes

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