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The influence of specialty training, experience, discussion and reflection on decision making in modern restorative treatment planning

Lookup NU author(s): Aws Alani


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Aims This study was designed to determine the effect of reflection and discussion of a group of dentists with differing backgrounds and qualifications in the management of failed endodontic treatment. Materials and methods During the Dental Pan-Society plenary session (16-17 November 2007) delegates (n = 393) were asked a series of questions on the management of a case with failed endodontic treatment of four maxillary incisors restored with linked crowns in a patient with a high smile line. The case had been previously posted on the conference website in addition to being presented on the day of the forum. Responses of delegates to predetermined questions and options on the management of the case were recorded using closed-circuit devices for each individual delegate. The questions were repeated after the case was opened up for discussion by the delegates in conjunction with a panel of leading experts. The discussion topics included the factors affecting the outcome of secondary root canal treatment, post-extraction changes and the options for prosthetic replacement including the provision of implants in the aesthetic zone. Results The initial response of the majority (58%) of delegates favoured extraction and prosthetic rehabilitation over endodontic retreatment of the affected teeth. Following the discussion this figure reduced to 50%. In respect to those individuals who were specialists, extraction was again the preferred option before the discussion for periodontists (74%), prosthodontists (64%) and restorative dentists (65%). This was in contrast to endodontists who preferred endodontic retreatment, with only 30% identifying extraction as the treatment of choice. Following the discussion, the number of periodontists and endodontists who favoured extraction reduced by 3% and 5% respectively, whereas the number of prosthodontists and restorative dentistry specialists who preferred extraction increased by 2% and 4% respectively. Conclusion Reflection and discussion can make individuals reconsider their initial treatment decisions. These personal skills may become more significant when planning treatment for complex restorative cases.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Alani A, Bishop K, Djemal S

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: British Dental Journal

Year: 2011

Volume: 210

Print publication date: 26/02/2011

ISSN (print): 0007-0610

ISSN (electronic): 1476-5373

Publisher: Nature Publishing Group


DOI: 10.1038/sj.bdj.2011.92


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