1. bookVolume 1 (2021): Issue 1 (January 2021)
Journal Details
First Published
01 Sep 2021
Publication timeframe
1 time per year
access type Open Access

Head and Neck Cancer Literacy in Nigeria: A systematic Review of the Literature

Published Online: 20 Sep 2021
Volume & Issue: Volume 1 (2021) - Issue 1 (January 2021)
Page range: 25 - 49
Received: 22 Jun 2021
Accepted: 09 Jul 2021
Journal Details
First Published
01 Sep 2021
Publication timeframe
1 time per year

Introduction: Head and neck cancer (HNC), oral cancer inclusive (OC), is one of the major causes of cancer-related deaths globally, especially in Nigeria – a developing African country. Public literacy about HNC plays a very crucial role in HNC prevention. Aim: This study aimed to systematically review existing literature on literacy of HNC in Nigeria. Methods: We searched the PubMed, Google Scholar and AJOL databases for all relevant English articles published on HNC literacy in Nigeria from January 2000 till October 2020. Only relevant articles were included for the study. Quality assessment of the full text of the included articles was done using the Appraisal Tool for Cross-Sectional Studies (AXIS); also, relevant data were extracted from these articles and analyzed thematically. Results: A total of 21 articles (19 surveys and 2 interventional studies), which studied a total population of 7,883 people, were included in the study. All the included articles were rated “excellent” (70 – 100%), regarding quality. The awareness rates of HNC/OC, as documented in the included studies, ranged from 0% to 100%; however, the rate recorded in the majority of these studies was <50%. In-depth knowledge of HNC/OC was found to be generally poor among the surveyed population groups; however, education intervention was found to improve in-depth knowledge of HNC and attitudes toward peer and nonpeer education about HNC among Nigerians. Conclusion: The level of knowledge regarding HNC, in Nigeria, is low. The use of relevant health education programs to boost knowledge about HNC among the Nigerian public is highly recommended.


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