Decline in Complete Dentures Patients\' Turn-Out in Dental Schools: Experience at UCH, Ibadan, Nigeria
The current study is designed to determine the trend in the demand for complete dentures by edentulous patients attending Ibadan dental school's prosthodontic out- patient clinic, compare the possible reasons responsible for the observed trend with those described for the American schools and to offer useful suggestions that would improve or sustain the turn- out of Ibadan dental schools prosthodontic patients. A six year (2000-2005) retrospective review of departmental and patients' records were undertaken. The information retrieved from the records include: age of patients, gender, year of presentation, amount paid for the prostheses and the number of students graduated per year. There was a steady decline in the total number of patients seen per two subsequent years from the year 2000-2005. There was a steady increase in the total number of students graduated per two subsequent years. The result also shows that the cost of complete dentures was upwardly reviewed on two occasions during the period under study. A downward trend in the number of complete dentures patient population at Ibadan Dental School was observed. The factors responsible may include: upward review of the cost of treatment, industrial actions, and lack of steady supply of consumables, electricity and pipe borne water. Increase in dentists-to patients ratio arising from the addition of new dental graduates to the existing dentist population may also have an effect. It is suggested that the above factors should be addressed and the image of dental schools as centers of excellence should be created.
Nigerian Medical Practitioner Vol. 52 (3) 2007: pp. 60-64