September 2008

Volume 25, Issue 3

The presenting complaints of low income adults for emergency dental care: An analysis of 35,000 episodes in Victoria, Australia.

Authors: S. McGuire J. Hoogeveen P. Bacchia P. Johnstone C. Khew H. Marchant K. Morris C. Riley K. Smith E. Kruger M. Tennant
doi: 10.1922/CDH_2194Kruger05


Objective This study examined the mix of presenting problems faced by a large diverse dental service treating low-income Australian adults and provides a basis for communities to understand and manage demand for dental services. Design A retrospective analysis in a state-wide multi-centre dental health service. Data for all patients (in all public adult dental clinics in the state of Victoria during MayAug 2005) who used the emergency services in a 12 week period were recorded and analysed. A triage question tree was developed and embedded into a neural network based computer triage tool. Results Approximately 52% of low income adults presenting for emergency treatment required treatment on the day of triage. The main problem was with natural teeth (89.6%). Of those with natural teeth problems, 41.3% had pain disturbing their sleep patterns and 14.7% had experienced a swelling. Metropolitan patients accessed the services 2.3 times more than rural patients. Conclusion These data clearly highlight that there is significant opportunity to reduce nearly 48% of on-day demand for emergency dental care through the application of appropriately clinical based triage. Key words: Dental triage, emergency, presenting complaints


Other articles in this issue

Article Pages Access
Editorial - Research on oral health and the quality of life – a critical overview 130-131 Download
Comparison of two methods in deriving a short version of oral health-related quality of life measure. 132-136 Download
Oral health and its impact on the life quality of homeless people in Hong Kong 137-142 Download
The presenting complaints of low income adults for emergency dental care: An analysis of 35,000 episodes in Victoria, Australia. 143-147 Download
International variation in the incidence of oral and pharyngeal cancer 148-153 Download
Caries prevalence in 2-year-old children in the city of Zurich 154-160 Download
Association between breastfeeding duration and non-nutritive sucking habits 161-165 Download
I want braces: factors motivating patients and their parents to seek orthodontic treatment. 166-169 Download
Cariogenic and erosive potential of the medication used by HIV-infected children: pH and sugar concentration 170-172 Download
Prevalence of breath malodour in 7-11 year old children living in Middle Anatolia, Turkey. 173-177 Download
Enamel fluorosis in 12- and 15-year-old school children in Costa Rica. Results of a National Survey, 1999 178-184 Download
Restorative treatment threshold reported by Iranian dentists 185-190 Download
Short Communication - Fissure sealants on permanent first molars – consequences of a one-year delay 191-192 Download


Online (Single user only)
Institution Online (IP address validation)

Back issues may be obtained from the publisher

Consider recommending subscription to your institution's library

You can view Open Access papers without a subscription.