Port Harcourt Medical Journal

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Risk factors associated with accidental ingestion of dental prosthesis in a Nigerian tertiary hospital

PR Adobamen, SA Okeigbemen


Background: Ingestion of dental prosthesis is a challenging health problem that may result in severe and at times fatal complications.

Aim: To identify risk factors that may lead to accidental ingestion of these dental prosthesis and suggest preventive strategies.

Methods: This was a prospective observational study at the University of Benin Teaching Hospital, Benin City, between 1st January, 2009 and 31st December, 2010 of patients presenting with ingestion of dental prosthesis. The bio data and data relating to circumstances surrounding the ingestion of the dental prosthesis  were obtained from the patients and analyzed manually.

Results:  During the study period, eight patents were see, seven male and one female. Their ages ranged from 35 to 85 years with an average of 61.13 years.  All the dental prosthesis retrieved from patients in this study were  unsecured. Most of the patients with impacted dental prosthesis did not have the habit of removing their denture before sleeping; eating or taking drugs orally, even-though the activity engaged in during ingestion of dental prosthesis in all the patients were during eating, drinking water or drugs. Only one of the patients ever went for check-up after the initial fitting of their denture.

Conclusion: Removal of unsecured dental prosthesis before eating, drinking water or drugs will likely reduce the incidence of their ingestion in our environment.

Keywords: Preventive, Strategies, Dental prosthesis, Impaction, Health education, Oesophagus
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