Purpose: The purpose of this investigation was to obtain the opinions and assess the attitudes of Swedish general dental practitioners in private practice versus a public health care setting regarding management of patients with a shortened dental arch (SDA). Materials and Methods: A questionnaire containing different statements regarding the SDA concept was sent to a random sample of 189 clinicians. Differences between male and female practitioners and between private practitioners (PPs) and those employed by the Public Dental Health Service (PDHS) were tested for statistical significance by the Student t test. Results: The response rate was 54% (102 clinicians). Among the respondents, 62% were men and 38% were women. Fifty-six percent were PPs and 44% were employed by the PDHS. The results showed small differences in attitudes between various groups of practitioners but large individual variations. In general, Swedish general practitioners had a positive attitude toward the SDA concept with respect to oral function and oral comfort. They recognized few risks with a dentition lacking molar support, although female clinicians were more risk conscious. PPs expressed fewer advantages in using the SDA concept than PDHS practitioners with respect to the reduced risk for overtreatment, better patient economy, and the ability for older patients to keep their teeth. Conclusion: The results from this questionnaire study indicate that, overall, Swedish general practitioners have an affirmative opinion toward the SDA concept.
Int J Prosthodont 2006;19:171–176.