Awareness and knowledge of oral cancer and potentially malignant oral disorders among dental patients in Far North Queensland, Australia

Formosa, Joseph, Jenner, Rachel, Nguyen-Thi, My-Duyen, Stephens, Caitlin, Wilson, Corey, and Ariyawardana, Anura (2015) Awareness and knowledge of oral cancer and potentially malignant oral disorders among dental patients in Far North Queensland, Australia. Asian Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention, 16 (10). pp. 4429-4434.

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Background: Public awareness/knowledge on oral and pharyngeal cancer (OPC), potentially malignant disorders (PMODs) and their risk factors is crucial for prevention and early detection of OPC and PMODs. Yet, there are no published data available on the awareness and knowledge of OPC and PMODs among people living in Far North Queensland, Australia. Materials and Methods: This study was conducted as a cross sectional survey. A self-administered questionnaire was designed and consisted of relevant questions to ascertain socio-demographic information, awareness and knowledge of OPC, PMODs and risk factors and questions on participant's exposure to risk factors and dietary history were also included. Survey was carried out at the Dental Clinic of the James Cook University School of Dentistry (JCU Dental), Cairns, Australia. Subjects above the age of 20 years (n=366) were randomly selected during the period from 31st July to 6th September 2013 and questionnaire was distributed to complete while they are waiting for treatment. Data analysis was carried out using SPSS version 21 and the chi-squared test was employed to compare groups. P<0.05 was considered statistically significant. Results: The study revealed that 52.3% of the respondents were aware of the existence of OPC but only 19.0% were aware of PMODs. Of those who were aware of oral cancer, 92% agreed or strongly agreed that smoking is a strong risk factor for OPC. Similarly a relatively high proportion of the respondents agreed or strongly agreed that tobacco chewing (84%), tobacco chewing with areca nut (68%), chewing areca nut alone (51%) and exposure to actinic radiation (71%) as risk factors. However, the results for alcohol intake, age, and HPV infection were found to be relatively poor with proportions 33%, 34%, and 23% respectively. Conclusions: This study revealed an alarming lack of awareness and knowledge of OPC and PMODs.

Item ID: 39570
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1513-7368
Keywords: oral cancer; potentially malignant oral disorders; awareness; far north Australia
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Funders: James Cook University
Date Deposited: 07 Sep 2015 00:48
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1105 Dentistry > 110505 Oral Medicine and Pathology @ 100%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920402 Dental Health @ 100%
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