A tropical tertiary neurosurgical centre response to COVID-19 pandemic and its effect on neurosurgical practices

  • Olufemi Idowu
  • Hammed Oshola
  • Jeuel Idowu
  • Ademola Omosuyi
Keywords: COVID-19; Neurosurgery; Protocols; SARS-CoV-2.


Background: COVID-19 pandemic may decrease the quantum of care for patients with neurosurgical conditions.

Objectives: To determine outpatient clinic (OPC) patient load, neurosurgical procedures volume and disease spectrum following the institution of a new care protocol during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and compare with previous practice data in our institution.

Methods: A monocentric retrospective analysis of all patients requiring neurosurgical care over a 2-year period.

Results: There was a 42.4% reduction in OPC attendance and 41.8% reduction in surgical procedures in 2020 compared to 2019. There was >60 percent reduction in the volume of surgery that was done at the onset and peak of the pandemic but this has normalized in November 2020 despite the resurgence of COVID-19, after the institution of a new care protocol. Neurotrauma procedures (29.6%) were the most common neurosurgical operation in 2020 while congenital malformation surgery (37.3%) was the most common procedure performed in 2019.

Conclusions: The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic initially led to significant decrease in quantum and spectra of patients who presented at the OPC and for neurosurgical procedures. Instituted local protocol and Teleclinics, if added to clinical care armamentarium, may help to improve on the low patient attendance during pandemics.

Keywords: COVID-19; Neurosurgery; Protocols; SARS-CoV-2.


Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 1729-0503
print ISSN: 1680-6905