According to Global Cancer Observatory of the IARC, oral cancer in Argentina has a mortality rate of 1.1 per 100,000 inhabitants for 2020. Most cases diagnosed in late stages even when early detection and control of risk factors are the most effective tools to reduce the high lethality of this disease. The level of knowledge, attitudes and practices of dentists regarding oral cancer prevention in Argentina is unknown. To evaluate, through a questionnaire, the knowledge, attitudes and practices about oral cancer in the province of Salta, Argentina. In a convenience sample of 76 dentists who practiced their profession and who attended an event of the provincial dental association, a confidential survey applied on knowledge, attitudes and practices on the prevention of oral cancer. The survey analyzed based on descriptive and inferential statistics. Dentists are aware of risk factors for oral cancer, such as tobacco use (88.2 %), presence of potentially malignant lesions (84.2 %), alcohol consumption, but also about types of premalignant lesions. (88.2 %) and main location of oral cancer (84.2 %). Attitudes depend on “having a specialty in the dental field” and “having taken a formal course in the last 12 months” (c2 = 13.512, DF= 4, p=0.009). Practices depend on “having taken a formal course in the last 12 months”, on the “belief that the professional is adequately prepared to perform an examination for oral cancer”, and the “type of professional practice” (c2 = 14.078, DF=7, p=0.034). This study revealed that it is necessary to strengthen the knowledge, attitudes and practices of dentists in the Province of Salta in Argentina regarding the prevention of oral cancer, this with the purpose of designing really effective public health strategies, which also not only must be executed by the health authority but must be examined by dental schools.
KEY WORDS: Mouth neoplasms, Diagnosis, Attitude of health personnel, Professional practice, Argentina.
How to cite this article
MOLINA ÁVILA, I.; PIMENTEL SOLA J. M.; ROCHA-BUELVAS, A. & HIDALGO PATIÑO, C. A. Oral cancer: Knowledge, attitudes and practices of dentists of the Province of Salta, Argentina, 2018. Int. J. Odontostomat., 16(2):249-257, 2022.