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The distribution of burden of dental caries in schoolchildren: a critique of the high-risk caries prevention strategy for populations.

Batchelor, PA; Sheiham, A; (2006) The distribution of burden of dental caries in schoolchildren: a critique of the high-risk caries prevention strategy for populations. BMC Oral Health , 6 3-. 10.1186/1472-6831-6-3.

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Abstract

BACKGROUND: The 'high-risk approach' is a commonly adopted strategy recommended for the prevention of dental caries in populations. The scientific basis for the strategy has been questioned. The objective of this study is to assess the contribution that children identified at 'high-risk' made towards the total of new caries lesions over a 4-year period, by analysing the distribution of new lesions per 100 children. METHODS: Data are from the National Preventive Dentistry Demonstration Programme (NPDDP) in the United States. The analyses identified the distribution of new carious lesions over a 4-year period in four groups of 7 year-old children who received differing preventive regimes. RESULTS: The majority of new lesions occurred in those children classified at lowest caries risk at baseline. Irrespective of the preventive regime adopted and the initial caries levels, children classified as 'highest risk' contributed less than 6% of the total number of new lesions developing over 4 years. CONCLUSION: These findings challenge the basis for the adoption of a high-risk strategy.

Type: Article
Title: The distribution of burden of dental caries in schoolchildren: a critique of the high-risk caries prevention strategy for populations.
Location: England
DOI: 10.1186/1472-6831-6-3
Keywords: Child, Cost-Benefit Analysis, Dental Caries, Follow-Up Studies, Humans, Preventive Dentistry, Program Evaluation, Risk Assessment, School Dentistry, United States
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Pop Health Sciences > Institute of Epidemiology and Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Pop Health Sciences > Institute of Epidemiology and Health > Epidemiology and Public Health
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/42976
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