Objectives: Small-scale studies indicate that persons with intellectual/developmental disabilities (I/DD) have an increased prevalence of dental disease. Risk factors, including the use of medications, and their impact on the oral health of the I/DD population are not well understood. This study explored potential associations between medication usage and untreated caries in a select group of adults with I/DD.
Methods: This cross-sectional study utilized data generated by dentists at the time of treatment at a state-supported system of dental clinics. Medication usage was recorded for a convenience sample of 370 dental records of I/DD adults (≥20 years) treated between April 1, 2009-March 31, 2010. The compiled data base was converted to SAS data sets for analysis (Version 9.2).
Results: Of the 370 patients, 228 (61.6%) were male. The mean (SD) age was 50.1 years (13.2); range 20-87 years. 345 (93.2%) were dentate, mean (SD) age 49.2 (13.1). Mean age (SD) for edentulous was 61.8 (8.1). Number of medications/patient ranged from 0-17, with a mean (SD) of 7.4 (3.5). 58.6% of the study population was on 7 or more medications. 57.1% of the dentate group and 80% of the edentulous group were on 7 or more medications. In the dentate group the prevalence of untreated caries was 51.3%.
Conclusions: The percentage of those in the study group on 7 or more medications is higher than in the U.S. population (58.6 % compared to 25%, respectively). The study population had a high prevalence of untreated caries when compared to data for the U.S. population from nationally representative samples. Follow-up studies examining medication usage and potential associations with dental diseases are indicated to investigate impact of medications on the oral health of DD population.
Keywords: Caries, Developmental Disability, Health services research and Outcome (Health)
See more of: Behavioral, Epidemiologic, and Health Services Research