Perception and Attitude of Dental Students and Interns Regarding the Diagnosis and Management of Oral Mucosal Lesions and Salivary Glands Hypofunction

The Open Dentistry Journal 22 December 2021 RESEARCH ARTICLE DOI: 10.2174/1874210602115010680



The perception and attitude of dental students/graduates regarding diagnosing/managing oral medicine cases are scarcely investigated.


The aim of this investigation was to evaluate the level of confidence in diagnosing/managing cases of oral mucosal lesions and salivary glands hypofunction.


A 29-items questionnaire descriptive survey was distributed among dental interns and sixth-year students in the city of Jeddah during March-April of 2020.


A total of 136 (81 interns and 55 sixth-year students) completed the questionnaire, of which 69.9% were from a government school, and 30.1% were from private schools. For oral mucosal lesions [i.e., aphthous/herpes simplex virus ulceration], the majority of government and private schools’ participants reported being confident in their ability to diagnose (88.4% and 87.8%, respectively) and provide treatment (63.2% and 56.1%, respectively). For oral candidiasis, the majority were confident in their ability to diagnose (government: 95.8%; private: 59.1%) and treat (government: 77.9%; private: 65.9%). The confidence in diagnosing lesions suspicious for dysplasia/premalignancy was high in 77.9% of government and 80.5% of private schools. Similar reporting was found regarding salivary hypofunctions (government: 93.7%; private: 90.2%). For the likeness to refer, the majority of participants were likely to refer to oral medicine, as the 1st choice, followed by oral surgery.


Dental interns/sixth-year students seemed to have high levels of confidence in diagnosing/managing oral mucosal lesions and salivary hypofunctions. However, the partial participation and the subjectivity of reporting may have hindered capturing the full/precise picture.

Keywords: Oral medicine, Dental students, Perception and attitude, Oral mucosal lesions, Salivary glands dysfunction, Dentistry.
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