Prevalence and characteristics of pediatric hypertelorism: insights from Ugwolawo, Kogi State, Nigeria

Document Type : Original Article

Authors

Department of Anatomy, Faculty of Basic Medical Sciences, Adeleke University, P.M.B 250, Ede, Osun State, Nigeria

Abstract

Background: Hypertelorism is a medical condition characterized by an abnormally increased distance between two organs or structures, particularly the eyes.
Objectives: The study aims to investigate the prevalence and characteristics of hypertelorism among 8–10-year-old children in Ugwolawo community of Kogi State, Nigeria.
Methods: Three hundred children (150 males and 150 females) were included in the study. Data on inner canthal distance (ICD), interpupillary distance (IPD), and outer canthal distance (OCD) were collected through physical examinations and questionnaires. Standardized photographs were taken to aid in further analysis and confirmation of hypertelorism. The data were analyzed using GraphPad Prism version 8, employing t-tests for comparisons involving variables such as gender, and Spearman's correlation coefficient to assess the association between age and the facial indices. The prevalence of hypertelorism in the study population was assessed, and potential risk factors were explored.
Results: The mean ages for male and female participants were 9.0±0.8 and 9.49 ± 0.5 years, respectively, while the overall mean age for all subjects was 9.25 ± 0.7 years. IPD, ICD, and OCD were assessed, and no statistically significant differences were found between males and females in terms of these indices. Additionally, Spearman's correlation coefficient indicated a significant correlation between age and OCD, but no significant correlations were observed for IPD and ICD. The medical history analysis showed that none of the participants had been diagnosed with hypertelorism, but 4% reported a family history of hypertelorism or craniofacial abnormalities.
Conclusion: The absence of diagnosed cases of hypertelorism in the studied population suggests a relatively low prevalence of the condition. However, the presence of family history in 4% of the participants highlights the potential role of genetic factors in hypertelorism. Larger-scale studies are recommended for deeper exploration of these findings.

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