Pediatric pathology services in Africa

Darcy A. Kerr, Ronald Otto Christian Kaschula

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Context.-Like other pathology services in developing settings, pediatric pathology in Africa is faced with major challenges such as limited access to resources and few opportunities for professional advancement. Additionally, the discrepancy between the large burden of pediatric diseases, many of which individually are rare enough to prove challenging to the general pathologist, and the amount of specialized training available compounds the underlying problems and makes the provision of a highquality service difficult. Pediatric neoplasms in particular are a chief cause for concern among general pathologists practicing in Africa. Objectives.-To provide relevant pediatric pathology information with an emphasis on pediatric malignancies to pathologists practicing in Africa, where children represent a very high proportion of the population and training in pediatric pathology is incomplete. Data Sources.-Authors' experience and relevant literature. Conclusions.-The limitations inherent in working within a low-resource setting may be reduced by thoughtful and purposeful triaging of specimens, prudent use of cytology in facilitating rapid and inexpensive diagnoses, and collaboration within and outside of the continent. Increased investment in and advocacy for child health, including the creation of additional hospitals dedicated to the care of children, are likely necessary to significantly advance children's health in the region.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)767-774
Number of pages8
JournalArchives of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2013
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Medical Laboratory Technology


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