Neurooncology Research in Nigeria: Great Untapped Potential

Adefisayo Adekanmbi, Katherine B. Peters, Evangelia Razis, Augustine A. Adeolu, Rimas V. Lukas, James A. Balogun*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Background: Nigeria has the largest population in Africa and has suboptimal access to neurooncology care. It has been estimated that there is approximately 1 neurosurgeon for every 2.4 million people in the country, with only few of these trained in the neurooncology subspecialty and no dedicated medical or radiation neurooncologists. There is a paucity of information on the field of neurooncology in Nigeria. This manuscript aims to provide an overview of the current state of neurooncology literature in Nigeria. Methods: A systematic literature review was performed, using Google Scholar, PubMed, and African Journals Online, to search for articles related to neurooncology in Nigeria, from 1963–2018. Articles were reviewed and categorized. Results: Sixty-three relevant articles were identified. They comprised original research in basic science (N = 1), clinical science (N = 59), and reviews (N = 3). Retrospective case series were the most common type of publication. Categorizing according to histology, articles focused on meningioma (N = 12), pituitary tumors (N = 10), glioma (N = 7), central nervous system metastases (N = 6), multiple histologic types (N = 25), and other types of tumors (N = 3). Eight pediatric neurooncology publications were among these. Two manuscripts, focusing on surgical subjects, specifically addressed issues on neurooncology clinical practice in Nigeria. Of the total manuscripts, 26 were published in Nigerian-based journals and 37 in journals outside Nigeria. The majority of the journals were low−impact factor journals. An increasing number of publications over time was noted. Conclusions: There is a small but growing amount of scholarly literature on neurooncology from Nigeria. However, there continues to be room for growth in neurooncology research output. With Nigeria's large patient population, there is potential to learn and add to the academic literature. Although there are logistical obstacles to both patient care and research in neurooncology in Nigeria, there is promise for favorable advancement.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)381-385
Number of pages5
JournalWorld neurosurgery
StatePublished - Apr 2019


  • Academic
  • Africa
  • Brain tumor
  • Neuro-oncology
  • Nigeria
  • Publications
  • Scholarship

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology


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