Pediatric Neurosurgery in East Africa: An Education and Needs-Based Survey

Rebecca Y. Du*, Grace M. Thiong'o, Melissa A. LoPresti, Nilesh K. Mohan, Michael C. Dewan, Jacob Lepard, Sandi Lam

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Introduction: A pediatric neurosurgery training workshop was organized for residents and consultants in East Africa. We aimed to compile feedback from the course participants to 1) characterize the state of neurosurgical education; and 2) identify the perceived practical education needs. Methods: The survey of demographic, clinical background and practice, and feedback questions was distributed to all attendees. Responses were elicited via yes/no questions and Likert scales, with the score ranging from 1 (not important, not useful, never) to 5 (very important, very useful, often). The data were de-identified and analyzed in aggregate. Results: A total of 11 neurosurgeons and trainees completed the survey, including 6 residents (55%) and 5 consultants (45%). Although 5 countries of origin were represented, all attendees (100%) have completed their neurosurgery training in Kenya. The respondents had most frequently treated trauma (least common to most common, 1–5; mean, 4.55 ± 0.93), hemorrhagic stroke (mean, 4.27 ± 0.79), and pediatric tumors (mean, 4.27 ± 1.01). In training, the most commonly used study resources were online resources (9; 82%), textbooks (7; 64%), and online lectures (7; 64%). The areas of greatest perceived need in education and training included general neurosurgery (least to most need, 1–10: 9; 82%), pediatric (9; 82%), trauma and neurocritical care (7; 64%), and neuro-oncology (7; 64%). All 11 respondents (100%) reported that more direct operative teaching was important for educational improvement. Hydrocephalus (least to most useful, 1–5: 5.00 ± 0.00), neuro-endoscopy (4.91 ± 0.30), and tumor (4.91 ± 0.30) were considered the most useful content covered in the pediatric neurosurgery–focused training program to improve skills and knowledge base. Conclusions: The results from the present survey identified areas of education and training needs to guide further neurosurgical education efforts in East Africa.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e374-e382
JournalWorld neurosurgery
StatePublished - Sep 2020


  • East Africa
  • Global neurosurgery
  • Kenya neurosurgery
  • Neurosurgery training
  • Pediatric neurosurgery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology


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