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Head of Department


At inception in 1977 when the Ibadan dental school was established at the pre-clinical level, the Oral Pathology department was one of the four (4) departments on the list of departments to be established within the School despite the unavailability of staff with the requisite training in this area of specialty within the Hospital at the time.

However in 1978, the first set of dental students arrived from the University College Hospital dental school to begin training in clinical dentistry. The University relied on teachers from abroad to engage students in block teaching sessions and these teachers were also flown in for examinations. Prominent among these was Professor Newell Johnson. Despite these, the department of Oral Pathology still lacked indigenous staff. This informed the priority given to the training of indigenous staff by the Department which led to the appointment of Dr. J.O. Lawoyin (now Professor) in 1982. Subsequently, a staff development grant was awarded to Dr. Lawoyin and another member of staff for a postgraduate training in Oral Pathology abroad. Following his training in the Glasgow Dental Hospital, Dr. Lawoyin returned to the Hospital in 1985 as the first indigenous foreign trained oral pathologist in the department after qualifying with the a Master’s degree in Oral Pathology. Consequently, the then acting Head of the Department, Dr. H.A. Ajagbe (who was a surgeon, and now a retired Professor of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery), handed over the headship of the Department to Dr. Lawoyin.

By 1987, the need for the establishment of a separate laboratory in dentistry was brought to the fore. Under the unique leadership of (late) Professor Kayode Osuntokun, a written proposal was endorsed and a seed grant was approved for the establishment of a Laboratory. This was developed and in 1989, the Laboratory was declared open. (Today Dental/Oral Maxillofacial tissue specimen are processed and reported at the dental centre. Also, disease index are coded according to World Head Organization standard).

The Expansion and re-organization of the department was completed in 1990 with the establishment of the following which constituted a full diagnostic unit in dentistry.

  1. Oral & Dental Radiology
  2. Oral Medicine.
  3. Oral Diagnosis


Due to acute shortage of Oral Pathologist and the inability to attract additional staff/ consultants, the department in 1990 started training the resident doctors locally. By 1997, the first Oral Pathologist to be trained at the University College Hospital, Ibadan, Dr. Bamidele Kolude, completed his training as an oral pathologist and was appointed lecturer/consultant. The department has since trained eight additional resident doctors five of whom are presently lecturers/consultants in the faculty.  Presently, eight resident doctors are undergoing specialist training in the department. This development will enable the department to produce staff for other Dental Schools in the Country. The list below reveals the heads of the Department from inception till date.

Headship of the Oral Pathology/Oral Medicine Department from Inception


S/NNamePeriod of Headship
1.Prof. J. O. Lawoyin1996 – 1998, 2000 – 2002, 2004 – 2011
2.Dr. B. Kolude1998 – 2000, 2002 – 2004, 2011 – 2014
3.Dr. Bukola F. Adeyemi2014 – 2016
4.Dr. A. O. lawal2016 till Date



Currently, the Department has a research focus in the area of interceptive oral cancer. Also, research is currently being conducted on the etiology of oral cancer with emphasis on the role of diet and genetic aberration.

The department spearheaded the formation of the Nigerian Association of Oral Pathologists and Oral Medicine whereby specialists in this field are able to gather and interact to improve teaching as well as the practice of Oral Pathology/Oral Medicine in Nigeria.

The department has successfully organized two national workshops on Forensic Dentistry and Mass disaster which witnessed the attendance of military officers and prosecuting attorneys across the federation.

In the past 10 years, over 100 publications have been generated by the staff of the Department, from research activities carried out in the department.

At present, the department is progressing under the leadership of Dr. A.O. Lawal, with a focus on improving on its enviable standard of teaching and learning while generating research relevant to the diagnosis of tropical oral diseases.

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