The role of training of general surgeons in the emergency surgical management of neonates in Nigeria

  • Olakayode O. Ogundoyin
  • Dare I. Olulana
  • Taiwo A. Lawal
Keywords: developing countries, emergency surgery, health personnel, neonates, training


Background: Congenital anomalies are one of the major causes of hospital admissions in children in many parts of Africa, adequate knowledge of the presentations and management of these anomalies is essential to achieving good outcome. This study aimed at examining the role of training of healthcare personnel in the emergency management of the surgical neonates in Nigeria.

Methods: A 10-year retrospective study of 226 neonates who had emergency surgical procedures performed. Retrieved from their clinical records were information about the neonatal demography, clinical presentation, clinical diagnosis, operative and anaesthetic management as well as the outcome.

Results:  The mean age and weight of the neonates were 1.60±0.839 days and 2.79±0.636kg respectively. Congenital anomalies involving the gastrointestinal tract, anterior abdominal wall defects and the genitourinary system were the commonest causes of emergency presentations. The mortality rate was 6.6% but the management outcome was not significantly related to ASA physical status classification (χ2=2.98, p=0.395), the cadre of Surgeons (χ2=0.513, p=0.474) and the cadre of anaesthetists (χ2=0.081, p=0.776).

Conclusion: Adequate and proper training of requisite health care personnel who can work within the limit of the available resources will help in providing safe and accessible emergency neonatal surgical services in these countries.

Original Research