Mortality spectrum among adult surgical in-patients at the Niger Delta University Teaching Hospital, Okolobiri, South-south Nigeria: a five-year review

  • PJ Alagoa
  • BG Fente


Background: Knowledge of the common causes of death in a particular locality is important. This would help in planning interventions aimed at preventing and adequately managing such diseases to reduce mortality.

Aims: To document the common disease conditions which cause mortality in adult surgical in-patients and to ascertain any differences between males and females.

Methods: A retrospective study of all adult surgical in- patient deaths at the Niger Delta University Teaching hospital, Okolobiri between January, 2008 and December, 2012.  All deaths during the period were noted and their case notes were retrieved and necessary information obtained.

Results: A total of 1,681 patients were admitted into both the male and female surgical wards during the period. There were 1,101 (65.5%) males and 580 (34.5%) females.

There were a total of 76 deaths.  Of these, 51 (67%) were males and 25 (32.9%) were females. The mean age at death was 49.9± 20.1 years. In males, the mean age at death was 54.4±20.3 years and in the females it was 40.7± 16.7 years. The leading cause of death in males and females was malignancy.

Conclusion: Malignancies were the commonest cause of death in both men and women. In men, death from prostate cancer and breast cancer in women were the single leading causes of death. The mean age at death in women was significantly lower as compared with men (P=0.002).

Keywords: Adult, Mortality, In-patient, Surgical, Niger Delta


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eISSN: 0795-3038