Purpose: To assess the impact of oral health related quality-of-life (OHQoL) on patients presenting at the Department of Periodontology and Fixed Prosthodontics using a German version (the OHQoL-GE) of the oral health-related quality-of-life in the UK (OHQoL-UK) questionnaire. Materials and Methods: A total of 251 patients were invited to fill out the OHQoL-GE. In addition, patients were given a checklist of dental-related items over the past year including ‘tooth ache, dental treatment, bleeding gums, swollen gums and ‘problems with dental prosthesis. Prior to being seen by a dental professional, the patients completed the questionnaires. During the new patient clinic visit, medical and dental history, age, gender, number of teeth present and presence or absence and type of dental prosthesis were recorded. In addition, a basic periodontal examination (BPE) was performed. Results: Two hundred and fifteen OHQoL-GE questionnaires were completed. OHQoL-GE scores were significantly associated with patients self-reported symptoms and problems in the past year: experiences of ‘tooth ache (P < 0.05), ‘swollen gums (P < 0.001) and ‘problems with dental prosthesis (P < 0.05) with the exception of ‘bleeding gums (P = 0.102) and ‘dental treatment (P = 0.739). In addition, OHQoL-GE scores were directly correlated with the BPE (rs = −0.295, P < 0.01), the number of teeth present (rs = 0.190, P < 0.01) and inversely correlated with age (rs = 0.152, P < 0.05). Patients with removable partial dentures had the lowest median score of 43 (interquartile range, IQR 23), patients without dental prosthesis had a median score of 46 (IQR 18) and patients with fixed dental prosthesis (FDP) had the highest score of 54 (IQR 26). The differences were statistically significant between patients without dentures and patients with FDP (P < 0.05), and between removable denture wearers and patients with FDP (P < 0.05). Conclusions: The issues were periodontal and prosthetic status, number of teeth present and age impact on quality-oflife. This has implications in understanding the consequences of dental health and in the use of patient-centred outcomes in dental research. The OHQoL-GE demonstrates discriminative validity in a population seeking dental advice and/or treatment.
Keywords: dental care, dental health, German language, OHQoL, periodontal status, prosthetic status, quality-of-life, tooth loss