Pyrex Journal of Medicine and Medical Sciences

December 2014 Vol. 1(2), pp. 013-022

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Full Length Research Paper

Perceived Causes and Impacts of Buruli Ulcer and Societal Measures to Reduce Human Suffering from the Disease in the Nsawam-Adoagyiri Municipality of Ghana

Kwabena Asomanin Anaman*1 and Ama Agyaa Aboagye2

Institute of Statistical, Social and Economic Research, University of Ghana, Legon, Accra, Ghana

Corresponding Author E-mail:

Accepted 22nd November, 2014.


We analyzed the perceived causes of Buruli ulcer disease, impacts of the disease and measures that the government could undertake to reduce the impacts based on a random sampling survey of 200 respondents from the Nsawam-Adoagyiri Municipality in Ghana. The study involved sufferers of the disease, non-sufferers of the disease living in the communities of the sufferers, and health personnel offering care to patients at two government health centres. The results indicated that the most important cause of the disease, from the perspective of its sufferers, was the use of contaminated water for domestic household activities. On the other hand, non-sufferers living in the community indicated that the most important cause of the disease was from the natural environment due to the swampy nature of the area and worms or insects being the mode of spread of the disease from this swampy environment. However, health personnel considered the most important cause of the disease was poor personal hygienic practices. The majority of sufferers indicated that the disease had limited their ability to perform tasks in their community and imposed considerable costs on them. Respondents requested the government to undertake societal interventions to reduce the prevalence and impacts of the disease in the Municipality. These included the provision of free medical treatment for the disease, the provision of more information about the disease and its prevention to the public, improvement of the quality of environmental sanitation and research to identify the causes of the disease and its cure.

Keywords: Buruli ulcer, disease perceptions, Ghana, health economics, health education, neglected tropical diseases, prevention.

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