J Interdiscip Dentistry
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Year : 2015  |  Volume : 5  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 7-11

Rationale of referral of patients to a periodontist by general practitioners: Review with a cross-sectional survey

1 Department of Periodontics, K.V.G Dental College and Hospital, Sullia, Dakshina Kannada, Karnataka, India
2 Department of Oral Medicine and radiology, K.M.C.T Dental College, Calicut, Kerala, India

Correspondence Address:
Deepthi Anna Cherian
Department of Periodontics, K.V.G Dental College and Hospital, Sullia, Dakshina Kannada, Karnataka
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2229-5194.162737

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Background: Periodontology is a fast evolving field where newer insights into existing concepts are changing the face of the traditional periodontal treatment. However, the protocol of periodontal referrals has undergone little change over the last decade. This emphasizes the need for more research into what has been happening in the field of dental practice with a view of achieving the best prognosis for the patient's ailment. A questionnaire study was carried out in the form of a survey among 102 general dental practitioners to assess the knowledge update and periodontal referral relationship among general practitioners (GPs). Aim: The aim was to assess the knowledge update regarding advanced periodontal procedures among general dental practitioners. Materials and Methods: A survey form was distributed to 102 general dental practitioners having their dental clinics in and around Mangalore city with, qualification of Bachelor of Dental Surgery only. Results: The following trends were noted: (1) 71% of private practitioners referred patients to periodontists for surgical therapy. (2) About 50% GPs refer patients to periodontists for ridge augmentation and implant procedures. (3) 76% of GPs have attended <5 continuing dental education (CDE) programs in the past 1-year. (4) 92% of the GPs performed phase-1 therapy on their own. Conclusion: Majority of the private practitioners perform phase-1 therapy on their own, but the referral relationships have improved. Although almost half the number of private practitioners is aware of the procedures like implants and ridge augmentation, it is important to keep the knowledge updated by attending more CDE programs. Clinical relevance to interdisciplinary dentistry The referral of patients to specialist needs to improve and all dentist must be updated of the current trends in dental practice

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