1 Department of Periodontology, Faculty of Dentistry, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
2 Oral Medicine Division, Department of Diagnostic Oral Sciences, Faculty of Dentistry, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Infective endocarditis is a serious infection of the heart endothelium and valves. It carries long-term health risks and compromises the heart condition. However, this condition has been rarely observed since the introduction of appropriate antibiotic prophylaxis. Dentists play a major role in preventing infective endocarditis in susceptible patients. In this study, we assessed the levels of awareness about antibiotic prophylaxis for infective endocarditis among students and young dentists at King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Methods : This cross-sectional study included 367 dental students and dental interns who answered a questionnaire designed to assess their awareness levels; it included questions pertaining to demographic information and questions examining the general knowledge of the participants with regard to antibiotic prophylaxis for infective endocarditis. Results : An average of 50% of the participants clearly lacked knowledge regarding the conditions that require antibiotic prophylaxis, while an average of 65% provided correct answers pertaining to the conditions that do not require prophylaxis. Regarding dental procedures that require prophylaxis, the majority of responses were correct with an average of 71.2%. With regard to the type of antibiotic to be prescribed, 63.5% of the participants chose to prescribe 2 g of amoxicillin as a first-line antibiotic. Conclusion : The results of this study showed that the levels of awareness about antibiotic prophylaxis for infective endocarditis are below 100%. Awareness is essential because of the cardiac risks associated with the lack of appropriate treatment. Up-to-date and accurate knowledge is mandatory for all dental students and interns who see and treat patients on a daily basis.
Keywords: Antibiotics, dental students, endocarditis, prophylaxis, Saudi Arabia, teaching hospital.
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