Restorative treatment decisions regarding approximal and occlusal carious lesions among general dental practitioners in Palestine
Arandi, Naji Ziad
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Aim: To investigate restorative decisions made by dentists and to examine what demographic characteristics are associated with the decisions for managing approximal and occlusal lesions. Methods: A questionnaire was randomly sent to 900 Palestinian dentists. It noted the demographic details of the dentists and the years of experience. The questionnaire evaluated the respondents for their treatment decisions regarding approximal and occlusal carious lesions. The data was analyzed using the IBM SPSS statistics for windows. The associations between gender and years of experience of the respondents and their restorative decisions were assessed. Results: The response rate was 58.2%. For occlusal carious lesions, 93.9% of the respondents would postpone operative treatment until the lesion was in dentine (grade 3 to 5). For approximal lesions, intervention was deemed appropriate by 92.6% of the respondents when there was radiographic evidence of a carious lesion reaching the DEJ or deeper. Around 53% preferred to prepare approximal lesions according to the traditional principles of cavity preparation. For both approximal and occlusal lesions, the participants opted for resin composites. Statistically, there was a significant association between the restorative decisions with the years since graduation and gender. Conclusion: The study showed variations between the treatment decisions of Palestinian dentists. The subjects chose conservative treatment plans but still adhered to traditional learned practices especially when cavity preparation for approximal lesions was concerned. The years since graduation and gender played a significant role in the choice of treatment opted for. Resin composites seemed to be a popular choice for treatment.