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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2021  |  Volume : 8  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 7-11

Awareness, attitudes, and practices related to oral potentially malignant disorders and oral cancer among indigenous medicine practitioners in the Western Province, Sri Lanka


1 Institute of Oral Health, Ministry of Health, Colombo, Sri Lanka
2 Dental Services Unit, Ministry of Health, Colombo, Sri Lanka
3 Oral Pathology Unit, National Dental Hospital (Teaching), Colombo, Sri Lanka

Correspondence Address:
Prasanna Jayasekara
Institute of Oral Health, Ministry of Health
Sri Lanka
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/jdrr.jdrr_95_20

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Introduction: Oral cancer is a major public health problem in Sri Lanka. Health-care professionals have an important responsibility in control of oral potentially malignant disorders (OPMDs) and oral cancer. Since a considerable number of patients in Sri Lanka seek treatment from indigenous medicine practitioners (IMPs) for common oral conditions, they can be utilized for oral cancer control program. Aims: The aim of this study was to assess awareness, attitudes, and practices related to OPMDs and oral cancers among IMPs of government Ayurveda health-care centers in the Western Province, Sri Lanka. Subjects and Methods: A descriptive cross-sectional study was conducted among 338 of IMPs working in government Ayurveda health-care centers in the Western Province, Sri Lanka, from July 2018 to October 2018. A self-administered questionnaire was used to assess the awareness, attitudes, and practices. Statistical Analysis Used: Chi-square test and Fisher's exact test were used to detect associations with 0.05 significance level. Results: The response rate was 89.6%. Most of IMPs (63.7%) possessed satisfactory awareness, while 64.4% of IMPs had positive attitudes regarding OPMDs and oral cancer. Majority (83.5%) believed that lime in betel quid contains carcinogens. Majority of them were willing to do opportunistic screening (90.7%) and they considered it as their responsibility (92.1%). Only 41.3% of the IMPs examine oral cavity routinely and 55.5% of them advice patients regarding risk factors of OPMDs and oral cancer. Conclusions: Majority of IMPs possessed satisfactory overall awareness and positive attitudes regarding OPMDs and oral cancer. However, practices of IMPs related to OPMDs and oral cancer need to improve.


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