December 2013

Volume 30, Issue 4

Professional knowledge of accident and emergency doctors on the management of dental injuries

Authors: I.H. Nasr A. Papineni McIntosh S. Mustafa A. Cronin
doi: 10.1922/CDH_3184Nasr07

Abstract

Background: Accident and emergency (A&E) doctors are often the first to assess dental and dento-alveolar injuries. Early diagnosis and appropriate management is essential for a good long-term prognosis of restored dental aesthetics and function. Objective: To evaluate A&E doctors’ knowledge of the management of dental injuries, and appropriate onward referral. Design and Setting: A cross-sectional survey using a questionnaire sent to A&E doctors of all grades at all nine A&E hospitals in South Wales over a consecutive five-month period. Method: Data relating to the level of knowledge of emergency management of dental trauma were analysed. The relationship between doctor’s level of experience and previous training received on the management of common dento-alveolar trauma was considered. Data were analysed for Pearson correlation coefficients. Results: The response rate to the questionnaire was 72% (n=118). There was a negligible correlation between the career grade of the doctors and their knowledge of the management of dental injuries (r=0.128, p<0.001). A strong positive linear correlation (r=0.928, p<0.001) was found between those with prior training and their knowledge of dental injury management. Conclusions: The findings from this study suggest that A&E doctors have only partial knowledge of the management of dental injuries, though appropriate training can significantly increase knowledge. Keywords: tooth injuries, tooth fracture, tooth avulsion, tooth luxation, maxillofacial injuries, emergency treatment

£10 single article

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