Extraction of the Broken Down First Permanent Molar in Children: Practice and Knowledge of United Arab Emirates Dentists
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Introduction: Treatment of broken down first permanent molars (BDFPMs) varies from simple restorations to enforced extractions. In 2014, the guidelines for “Enforced Extractions of First Permanent Molars (EExFPMs)” were published in the United Kingdom. Aim: To assess the knowledge and practice of dentists in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) regarding the extraction of BDFPMs in children in light of the 2014 guidelines. Materials and methods: A cross-sectional sample of general dental practitioners (GDPs), paediatric dentists (PDs) and other practicing dentists dealing with children in the UAE completed a self-administered questionnaire between January 2016 and April 2016. Multiple choice questions covered management of BDFPMs; experience of BDFPMs extraction; knowledge and practice of the principle of EExFPMs; views on preservation or extraction of BDFPMs; to whom a case of BDFPMs would be referred; knowledge of the ideal age for the EExFPMs and finally actual awareness of the 2014 UK guidelines. Chi-square tests were conducted and statistical significance was set at 5%. Results: A total of 199 from 300 questionnaires were completed (66.33% return rate). Of those, 85% of the participants believed in saving BDFPMs rather than extraction and 89% preferred to refer/consult with other specialists. A majority (63%) believed that the decision to extract or keep BDFPMs was age related, and 61% knew the most appropriate age to extract lower FPMs (8.5- 10.5 years). Despite 69% being aware of the concept of EExFPMs in general, 51% had not considered and 74% had not practiced it in children. In addition, 82% of UAE dentists were unaware of the UK 2014 EExFPMs guidelines. Training background, specialty were significant influencing factors (p<0.05). Conclusion: Dentists in UAE prefer to restore rather than extract BDFPMs in children, although they would consult other specialists in case of BDFPMs extraction. There was lack of awareness of the actual UK 2014 EExFPMs guidelines in the UAE.