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Title: The epidemiology of headaches in an elderly population within the Life Rights Buildings of an elderly care facility in KwaZulu-Natal
Authors: Hughes, Keegan Craig 
Issue Date: 2019
Abstract: Aim: The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of selected headaches and their impact on the elderly residing within a particular elderly care facility in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. Subjects: Elderly participants, aged 60 years and older, residing in a selected elderly care facility in KwaZulu-Natal. Methodology: Once the Institutional Research Ethics Committee (IREC) approved the study, The Association for the Aged (TAFTA) granted permission for the researcher to conduct the study in their life rights buildings. The researcher then administered the questionnaires to the elderly who met the inclusion criteria, on the same day that they had read and completed the information letter and informed consent. The researcher and the research assistant remained present to read the questions to any participants unable to read or who were no longer able to read and answer any questions the participants may have had throughout the process. A total of 123 informed consent forms and questionnaires were distributed and collected, a return rate of 72% (p<0.05). All completed questionnaires were analysed by only the researcher and the statistician. Results: In total, 123 questionnaires were utilised for statistical analysis. The results indicated that 45.5% (p=0.3) of the participants presented with headaches and of these participants, 64.3% had primary headaches, while 35.7% presented with suspected secondary headaches (p=0.03). Of the primary headaches, tension type headache (TTH) had the highest prevalence at 17.1%, with migraine at 7.3% and cluster headache at 2.4%. This is congruent with current literature indicating that TTH has the highest effect on the elderly population. Conclusion: This study is consistent with previous studies conducted on the prevalence of headaches in the elderly. This study has contributed to a greater understanding of headaches experienced by the elderly and the impact headaches have on their daily lives. Focus needs to be placed on satisfactory and effective healthcare, with patient and practitioner education alike to enhance the quality of life and the ability to function self-sufficiently as an elderly individual.
Description: Submitted in partial compliance with the requirements for the Master’s Degree in Technology: Chiropractic, Durban University of Technology, Durban, South Africa, 2019.
Appears in Collections:Theses and dissertations (Health Sciences)

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