Edorium Journal of

Epidemiology

 
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Original Article
 
Knowledge and awareness about oral cancer: A descriptive study in Lagos state
Oyapero A.1, Akinleye A.I.2, Owoturo E.O.3
1Department of Preventive Dentistry, Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, Ikeja, Lagos, Nigeria.
2Department of Oral Pathology and Oral Medicine, Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, Ikeja, Lagos, Nigeria.
3Department of Restorative Dentistry, Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, Ikeja, Lagos, Nigeria.

Article ID: 100002E06OA2016
doi:10.5348/E06-2016-2-OA-1

Address correspondence to:
Dr. Oyapero Afolabi
Specialist, Dental Public Health
Lasuth

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How to cite this article
Oyapero A, Akinleye AI, Owoturo EO. Knowledge and awareness about oral cancer: A descriptive study in Lagos state. Edorium J Epidemiol 2016;2:1–12.


Abstract
Introduction: Oral cancer, the most common malignancy in the head and neck region, is the eighth most prevalent cancer in the world. It is essentially preventable through avoiding known risk factors while many international guidelines emphasize the importance of early detection. The aim of this study was to determine the awareness level about oral cancer in a group of patients presenting for routine dental care at the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, Ikeja, Lagos State (LASUTH).
Methods: The study sample consisted of routine patients that presented for care at the oral diagnosis clinic of LASUTH. A 31-item structured interviewer administered closed-ended questionnaire in English language was used to obtain socio-demographic information, medical and dental history of the respondents and their knowledge about the risk factors for oral cancer.
Results: Sixty-six percent of participants had heard about oral cancer but only 3% received this information from their dentists, while 10% had heard about it from their physicians. Eighty-two percent of the respondents had never had of an oral cancer examination and only 7% of them were sure they had received a tongue examination for oral cancer. Only 28% of the respondents had a high knowledge of the risk factors for oral cancer. Older patients (>35 years of age) (p = 0.013), those that were married (p = 0.009) and secondary educated respondents (p = 0.001) had a significantly lower level knowledge about the risk factors of oral cancer. The study participants that had heard of oral cancer (p = 0.027) and those that had an oral cancer examination (p = 0.022) had a significantly higher knowledge about the risk factors.
Conclusion: There is urgent need for primary preventive initiatives to reduce exposure to the risk factors of oral cancer to every dental visit should be taken as an opportunity to provide information about oral cancer and to do a thorough mouth examination.

Keywords: Awareness, Oral cancer, Oral examination, Risk factors


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Author Contributions:
Oyapero A. – Substantial contributions to conception and design, Acquisition of data, Analysis and interpretation of data, Drafting the article, Revising it critically for important intellectual content, Final approval of the version to be published
Akinleye A.I. – Analysis and interpretation of data, Revising it critically for important intellectual content, Final approval of the version to be published
Owoturo E.O. – Analysis and interpretation of data, Revising it critically for important intellectual content, Final approval of the version to be published
Guarantor of submission
The corresponding author is the guarantor of submission.
Source of support
None
Conflict of interest
Authors declare no conflict of interest.
Copyright
© 2016 Oyapero A. et al. This article is distributed under the terms of Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution and reproduction in any medium provided the original author(s) and original publisher are properly credited. Please see the copyright policy on the journal website for more information.



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