KNOWLEDGE, ATTITUDE AND PRACTICE OF DENTAL PRACTITIONERS IN KARACHI REGARDING ORAL CANCER
The aim of this study was to assess the knowledge, attitude & practices of dentists regarding oral cancer.
This was a cross sectional study conducted in the year 2018 in Karachi, Pakistan. The questionnaire comprised of demographics, and other three major categories of Knowledge, Practice and attitude. The first category assessed the prior knowledge of dental clinicians about site, signs, symptoms and risk factors of oral cancer the further two sections evaluated practices and attitude of dental practitioners regarding oral cancer screening, examination and their ability to detect oral cancer. In the study, 70% of the dentists had knowledge about common risk factors. 64.3 % dentists agreed that squamous cells are most common cancer causing cell. When question regarding early sign and symptoms were asked only 68.3% agreed that Erythroplakia is among most common early sign &symptom when questions regarding attitude were asked 77% dentists agreed that oral screening leads to early diagnosis while 75.4% dentists believed that they are trained to perform oral examination to detect oral cancer. Furthermore, 84.9% dentists said they performed screening on every patient.
Present study indicates that dental practitioners have sufficient knowledge about the etiological factors and diagnostic procedures. Furthermore, it highlights the need for standardized oral screening procedures, Which will lead to early detection of oral cancer and is essential to reduce oral cancer related mortality rates.