Training clinicians helps reduce rates of early childhood cavities

Sep 29, 2009

Researchers at Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) have found that pediatricians provided with the proper communication, educational and information technology tools and training could reduce the rates of children developing early childhood caries (ECC) or cavities by 77 percent. This study appears in the October issue of the Journal Medical Care.

ECC, the most common among children, can lead to serious complications if untreated, including abscesses requiring costly surgery. Infection and pain caused by ECC can also impair growth, weight gain and limit school attendance.

BUSM researchers provided pediatric clinicians with communication skills training to help them more effectively counsel parents and caregivers to reduce children's ECC risk. Pediatricians as well as clinical nurses participated in a one hour study training session, and they were also provided with educational brochures to give to parents. The electronic medical record was also adapted to prompt clinicians to remember to counsel. After the educational program, a simultaneous recruitment of children affected with ECC was conducted at a comparison site, where the clinicians did not receive training.

Parents and caregivers of children aged six months to five years were asked to participate in a clinical exam and interview that consisted of a series of questions inquiring about the parent or caregiver's discussion with the child's doctor or nurse. This interview assessed the degree the clinician covered the topics on which they had been trained to counsel regarding ECC risk reduction. This process was repeated approximately one year later.

The findings show that providers at the intervention site had greater knowledge and conducted more counseling, and patients at that site had significantly reduced odds of developing ECC over time. "Pediatric clinicians at Boston Medical Center are committed to children's oral health, and to addressing the deficit in clinical preparation to help prevent ECC," explained lead author, Nancy R. Kressin, PhD, an associate professor of General Internal Medicine at Boston University School of Medicine. "We developed and implemented a multi-faceted pediatric practice based intervention where children especially vulnerable to ECC received enhanced care to prevent this disease from occurring or reoccurring, and it had marked effects on reducing children's rates of developing ECC" said Kressin.

Source: Boston University

Explore further: Italian army to grow medical marijuana

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Children's asthma affected by parental expectations

Oct 06, 2008

Asthmatic children whose parents have high expectations for their ability to function normally are less likely to have symptoms than other children dealing with the condition, according to a new study. Children also are more ...

Study finds preemies more likely to score positive

Jan 29, 2009

Researchers from Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) and Boston Medical Center (BMC), in collaboration with other medical centers, have found that children born more than three months premature, are at three times ...

Researchers make bendable concrete

May 04, 2005

A new type of fiber-reinforced bendable concrete will be used for the first time in Michigan this summer- and University of Michigan scientists hope that their new material will find widespread use across ...

End of life physician-patient communication

Jul 22, 2008

Although a growing body of research supports a link between effective communication and patient, family and physician satisfaction, doctors, including oncologists and other specialists who frequently care for terminal patients, ...

Recommended for you

Non-stop PET/CT scan provides accurate images

22 hours ago

Siemens is improving PET/CT imaging and data quality while reducing radiation exposure. The Biograph mCT Flow PET/CT scanner is a new positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) system that, ...

Experts: Chopin's heart shows signs of TB

Sep 17, 2014

The preserved heart of composer Frederic Chopin contains signs of tuberculosis and possibly some other lung disease, medical experts said Wednesday.

The argument in favor of doping

Sep 17, 2014

Ahead of Friday's court ruling on whether ASADA's investigation into the Essendon Football Club was lawful, world leader in practical and medical ethics Professor Julian Savulescu, looks at whether there is a role for performance-enhancing ...

User comments : 0