East and Central African Journal of Surgery
Association of Surgeons of East Africa and College of Surgeons of East Central and Southern Africa
Vol. 17, No. 3, 2012, pp. 70-75
Bioline Code: js12053
Full paper language: English
Document type: Research Article
Document available free of charge
East and Central African Journal of Surgery, Vol. 17, No. 3, 2012, pp. 70-75
© Copyright 2012 - East and Central African Journal of Surgery
Dental Radiographs Ordered by Dental Professionals: an Experience from a Resource Limited Tertiary Public Health Facility Setting at Muhimbili National Hospital in Tanzania|
Sohal, K.S. & Owibingire, S.S.
Background: Radiographs remain fundamental tool in diagnosis of dental diseases, their availability and
social-economic status of the patient dictates the choice made by professionals. This study was done to
determine the indications and types of dental radiographs ordered by dental professionals in a resource
Methods: This was a cross sectional study involving 520 patients who underwent dental radiographic
investigation. Patients were examined and interviewed. Type of radiographs taken and indications were
Results: Out of 520 patients, 189 were male, and the mean age of the participants was 31.7 ± 13.9 years.
Most of the patients were aged 20-49 years. The frequent indication was dental caries followed by
periapical infection and impacted teeth. Periapical X-rays were taken for 748 teeth of which majority were
upper central incisors followed by mandibular molars.
Conclusions: Even in resource limited settings dental caries is still the regular indication for taking dental
radiographs, and periapical views are the most frequent type of radiograph ordered. Maxillary central
incisors and mandibular molars were types of teeth commonly x-rayed mainly due to the aesthetic
importance of the former and the preponderance of dental caries in the later group of teeth.