Under-reporting of gossypiboma in a third-world country. A sociocultural view


The paper looks at the reason for the low reportage of retained abdominal packs following an abdominal operation in a third world country like Nigeria. It is generally agreed that this unfortunate situation is under-reported. The reason for under-reporting is now given a socio-cultural perspective. Fear of litigation does not seem to be paramount here like it would be in the western (developed) world. Other explanations like fear of being made a scapegoat for something which may be due to spiritual attacks may be more important. The paper concludes by recommending that the removal of impediments to disclosure of this adverse surgical event will lie in education, discouragement of scapegoatism and improvement in hospital services in the third world.

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Irabor, D. (2012) Under-reporting of gossypiboma in a third-world country. A sociocultural view. Health, 4, 56-59. doi: 10.4236/health.2012.42010.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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