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A Journal on Dentistry and Maxillofacial Surgery
Minerva Stomatologica 2005 January-February;54(1-2):53-62
language: English, Italian
The dental needs of patients affected by infectious pathologies and/or seropositivity
Novelli F., Calvanese I.
Aim. The aim of the study is to assess the demand for urgent dental treatment in patients carrying infectious pathologies and otherwise, particularly those with a history of drug addiction.
Methods. The Narni Hospital Unit of Odonto-stomatology has set up a dental clinic for patients suffering from infectious diseases. Considering the high number of emergency cases presenting, we developed a prospective research instrument to study the urgent problems of drug-addict patients carriers or otherwise of infectious viruses. Our study examined 4 years of activity, from 1997 to 2000, during which time 456 patients were examined, all former drug addicts. For each of them a basic protocol, including initial examination, investigation of patient history, any laboratory examinations necessary and, finally, conservative, demolition and prosthetic rehabilitative therapies, was carried out.
Results. Subjects referring to the dental clinic for urgent problems numbered 120, precisely 26% of the total population. Distinguishing patients on the basis of basic systemic pathology, we observed that 28% of infected patients and 21% of healthy patients requested urgent dental treatment.
Conclusion. Former drug addict patients require an approach protocol, prophylaxis and specific, personalised therapy particularly where he or she is also a carrier of infectious pathologies. On the basis of our own personal experience, we describe how a good stomatological evaluation is necessary in this category of subjects who need dental care ever more frequently.