Knowledge and Attitude of Iranian Dental and Medical Students towards Oral Precancerous Lesions

Mahsa Khodaparast, Mohammad Hossein Lotfi, Maryam Asadat Hashemipour


Objective: To investigate the level of dental and medical students’ awareness and their attitude towards Oral cancer in Kerman, Iran. Material and Methods: The research is considered as a cross-sectional analytical study. A questionnaire was distributed among dental and medical students, reliability and validity of which has been confirmed through statistical tests and experts’ point of views. The questionnaire includes some questions for measurement of awareness and attitude of students in terms of diagnose, risk factor, and prognosis of lesions suspicious of malignancy, in the mouth. The results were analyzed using Mann-Whitney, Chi-square, Spearman, and ANOVA. Results: 350 questionnaires were distributed among dentistry and medical students, of which 318 were returned (90.8%). Dental students (16.32 ±3.1) achieved higher awareness score compared to the medical students (11.67 ±3.1). No significant relationship existed between age, gender, and average awareness score (p=0.023, and p=0.014, respectively). Dental students had more positive attitude in comparison to medical students; however, there was no significant relationship between age and positive attitude. Conclusion: Dentists and physicians do not have enough knowledge for cancer-related examinations, despite their professional obligations. The study shows training programs to be required in relation to risk factors and prognosis of oral cancer in form of refresher programs, and more emphasis in students’ curriculum.


Knowledge; Attitude; Students; Oral Medicine; Mouth Neoplasms.

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