Experience of Managing Head and Neck Cancer Patients Amongst Specialty Trainees in Restorative Dentistry

Ciaran Moore, Simon Critchlow, Gerald McKenna

Research output: Contribution to conferencePosterpeer-review


Background: Upon completion of Specialty Training in Restorative Dentistry, trainees (StRs) should
be proficient in maxillofacial prosthodontics to meet the restorative needs of head and neck cancer patients (HANC), and in preparation for the Intercollegiate Specialty Fellowship Examination (ISFE).1,2
Objective: The aim of this study is to collate and compare data relating to the training of Restorative Dentistry Rs in the management of HANC patients across different geographical locations within the British Isles. Methods: Current trainees were invited to complete an online questionnaire by the Specialty Registrars in Restorative Dentistry Group (SRRDG). Participants were asked to rate their confidence and experience in assessing and planning treatment for HANC patients, attending theatre and manufacturing surgical obturators, and in providing implants for appropriate cases. Respondents were also asked to appraise clinical and didactic teaching within their unit, and to rate their confidence of passing oncology- based questions in a future ISFE. Results: Responses were obtained from 21 StRs (n=21) training in all five countries within the British Isles. Most respondents were based in England (76%). A third were in their 5th year of training. Less than half reported that they were confident
of independently assessing (48%) or treatment planning (38%) HANC patients. More than half of StRs (52%) indicated that they were not confident of attending theatres alone and manufacturing a surgical obturator. One third (33%) rated their experience of treating oncology patients with implants as poor or very poor, including three in their 5th year of training. Less than one third rated didactic teaching in maxillofacial prosthodontics at their unit as good or excellent. Only 4 respondents indicated that they were confident of answering an ISFE oncology question on management of healthcare delivery. Six StRs expressed concerns over a lack of case-based exposure.
Conclusion: Experience and training in maxillofacial prosthodontics is inconsistent for StRs across the British Isles with many lacking in clinical exposure.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 01 Oct 2015
EventEuropean College of Gerodontology Annual Meeting - Titanic, Belfast, United Kingdom
Duration: 01 Oct 201503 Oct 2015


ConferenceEuropean College of Gerodontology Annual Meeting
CountryUnited Kingdom

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