Vaccines, used appropriately and efficiently, have changed the landscape of infectious diseases. Poliomyelitis is almost completely eliminated globally. In many industrialised countries, there has been over 99 percent reduction in incidence of diphtheria, tetanus, measles, mumps, rubella, Haemophilus in-fluenzae b meningitis and over 97 percent reduction in whooping cough.',2Unlike anti-biotics, most vaccines have remained equally effective despite years of continuous usage.
Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is isolated in 15-25% of young Malaysian children with bronchiolitis.',2 Although this observation is consistent with experience reported in other developing nations in the tropics,3•4 it is lower than that of temperate developed nations where RSV is isolated in 60 - 80% of young children with viral bronchiolitis.5,6 The majority of infections are mild, easily cared for at home and only 1% of children with RSV bronchiolitis require in-hospital care.' However, several categories of children have been identified to develop severe RSV bronchiolitis that is asso-ciated with an increased risk of mortality and significant morbidity. This 'high-risk' group includes children who are very young, ex-premature (gestation less than 36 weeks), children with chronic lung disease, congenital heart disease and immunodeficiency, namely, haematological transplant recipients.8'9 It is for this category of children in whom effective therapeutic strategies for the treatment of RSV bronchiolitis are most important.
Dengue and dengue hemorrhagic jiever are still a serious public health problem among people in developing countries. The study was conducted to assess the knowledge, attitude and practice among students in University Technology of MARA in Shah Alam Selangor, Malaysia, and to determine its association withprevious infection. A total of 218 students were selected randomly fom several residential colleges within the university main campus. They were interviewed for their perception of risk to dengue and their blood were taken for serological examination (Dengue IgG). It was found that 49.1% of students have had previous infection, however onlv 0.9% had history of symptomatic dengue infection. Males students originating fom urban areas were more at risk of being infected. The perception of risk to dengue was good among students but this factor is
unable to explain the magnitude of infection among them. Further study should look at the interaction between behaviour and environment among students who are sero negative.
MeSH terms: Dengue; Developing Countries; Fibrinogen; Immunoglobulin G; Malaysia; Male; Perception; Public Health; Students; Universities; Severe Dengue
Diabetes mellitus and its main complication, nephropathy, ajjbcts the economic wellbeing and quality of Iife of the sufferers and the population. A matched case control study was conducted in September 1998 to investigate the factors involved with nephropathy such as diabetic control, smoking, hypertension, familv history of diabetes and diabetic duration. Respondents were classyied based on the presence of microalbuminuria or macroalbuminuria, Seventy-two pairs of case and control were studied Duration of diabetes Q2 = 0.005), presence of lethargy and weakness prior to diabetes diagnosis @7 = 0.019), duration of smoking @7 = 0.014), duration of hypertension @2: 0.000), systolic hypertension Qu= 0e 025), uncontrolled diabetes with poor HbA1c level (v= 0.02Q and lack of diabetes knowledge Q2 = 0.037) were jbctors which related signyicantlv to nephropathy by univariate anahrsis. In multivariate anahrsis, systolic hypertension (p = 0.0015), lack of diabetes knowledge (17 = 0.0197), presence of lethargy symptom Q7 = 0.0027), prolonged diabetic duration @ = 0.0301) and higher body mass indices (p = 0. 0213) were predictors to diabetic nephropathy.
MeSH terms: Albuminuria; Ambulatory Care Facilities; Diabetic Nephropathies; Humans; Hypertension; Malaysia; Surveys and Questionnaires; Smoking; Body Mass Index; Case-Control Studies; Lethargy
A study was undertaken amongst private primary care providers in three urban centres of Malaysia to understand the organizational structure of the facilities and to assess the cost of running such services. A total of 150 clinics were involved in the study. Data was collected through interviews with owners of the clinics using semi-structured questionnaires. Solo-practitioners owned 64.7% of the clinics while 35.3% of them were owned by group practice. This study showed that the mean number of patients visited the clinics daily was 49.3 with the average operating hours of 79.4 hours/week (range 28.0 - 168.0 hours/week). Group practice clinics operates 23.9 hours longer than solo-practice clinics. Group practice clinics were more likely to offer 24 hours service than solo-practice clinics. Most of the clinics were manned by a single doctor (57.3%), 30.0 % had two doctors and only 12.7% were run by more than two doctors. On average, group practice employed greater number of supporting staff than solo-practice clinics (6.0 vs 4.3 people). The mean annual cost to run each facility was found to be RM 444,698. The mean cost per patient was found to be RM 32.09 for solo-practice clinics and RM 38.55 for group practice. Wages represented the highest proportion in the recurrent cost (61.1%) followed by drugs (29.2%) and consumables (2.7%). Building cost (67.9%) and equipment cost (25.9%) were the major capital costs for the clinics. This study could serve as a basis to reimburse private primary care providers in the future health financing scheme in Malaysia. To improve efficiency and contain cost in primary care settings, efforts should be targeted towards cost of wages and drugs utilised by the providers in their daily practice.
Key words: Private practice; primary care; costs; Malaysia.
MeSH terms: Ambulatory Care Facilities; Costs and Cost Analysis*; Cross-Sectional Studies; Group Practice; Humans; Malaysia; Physicians; Primary Health Care; Private Practice; Surveys and Questionnaires; Running; Salaries and Fringe Benefits
Due to the increasing demand or modern medical treatment and modern cosmetics by society, traditional sources have been neglected by younger generations. This study assesses the baseline level of Malay high school adolescents' use and perceptions of traditional medical treatment and cosmetics. 100 Malay high school students in Kuala Lumpur were administered a sbt- art uestionnaire. It was found that the amil is a strong external influence in their choice of medical treatment, (2) a wide variety of services are used by choice when they become ill, (3) a majority (68.8%) ofthese adolescents have a ddinite "loose " beliefin traditional medical treatment and related cosmetics; and (4) they would welcome promotion and information about these for the purposes of promoting their health and preserving their cultural heritage. Further study and action to broaden adolescent knowledge of traditional medical treatment and cosmetics are essential to ensure the continuance of this type of health promotion for the next generation.
MeSH terms: Adolescent; Health Promotion; Humans; Schools; Societies; Students
The objective of this study was to find out whether integration of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in a Primary Health Care Clinic improves client’s waiting time. This was a descriptive study based on a total of 588 clients, i.e. 291 clients from an ICT integrated primary health care clinic, which was Putrajaya Health Clinic and 297 clients from a manual health clinic, which was Salak Health Clinic, from 5th December 2000 until 10th January 2001. Clients attending both clinics during this study period were systematically random sampled. Information was obtained from structured questionnaires. Data were analysed with Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 10.0. Selected quantitative time variables, their mean and standard deviation were calculated. Integration of ICT in a primary health care clinic did not improve client’s waiting time. It was demonstrated by this study that the integration of ICT in Putrajaya Health Clinic led to significantly longer average waiting time (39.76 minutes) and longer average total time spend in the clinic (57.14 minutes) as compared to a manual clinic, Salak Health Clinic where its average waiting time was only 23.13 minutes and average total time spend in the clinic was 39.15 minutes. Based on the findings, it is possible that integration of ICT in a primary health care clinic could not play as a significant factor for improving or reducing client’s waiting time in Putrajaya Health Clinic yet, at least not for the time being. This is the first study to document waiting times specifically in our first ICT integrated primary health care clinic. Since it was found that integration of ICT in a primary health care clinic had made client’s waiting time significantly longer than the waiting time in a manual clinic, it could be interesting for future research to look into client’s satisfaction in an ICT environment clinic.
Key words: ICT, client satisfaction, primary care
MeSH terms: Adult; Ambulatory Care Facilities; China/ethnology; Cross-Sectional Studies; Female; Humans; India/ethnology; Malaysia; Malaysia/ethnology; Male; Primary Health Care; Surveys and Questionnaires; Patient Satisfaction*
Injury Hncluding home injury} is an important contributor to the nations’ statistics on mortality and morbidity. However, statistics on injury is still lacking in Malaysia. In 1996, the National Health and Morbidity Survey was conducted nationwide that includes injury as one ofthe scope studied at the community level. It was found that the prevalence of sefreported home injury in Malaysia was 2.5%. The prevalence was higher among the 0-4 years and more than 80 years groups. There was no dwzrence in the prevalence of injury by urban/rural location, ethnicity, citizenship, religion, marital status, level of education, income group or type of occupation. Females however reported a slightht higher figure than males (2. 7% i· 95% CI and 2.3% i 95% CD. Recommendations made include planning and designing of preventive intervention strategies and sreas for future studies.
Study name: National Health and Morbidity Survey (NHMS-1996)
MeSH terms: Ethnic Groups; Female; Humans; Malaysia; Male; Morbidity; Occupations; Surveys and Questionnaires; Residence Characteristics; Prevalence; Marital Status
In August 2000, the Disease Control Unit of T erengganu noted an increase in the number of serologically confirmed cases of hepatitis A virus (HAH in Kuala Terengganu Hospital. Preliminary investigation revealed that there were an outbreak of hepatitis A in districts of Kuala Terengganu and Marang. Eventually, a total of 334 associated cases were reported among Kuala Terengganu residents and 59 cases among residents of Marang. The age of the patients range j9·om 2 years to 71 years old (median 16 years). Males accounted for ( 69.5% of cases and had a higher sex specyic attack rate (96.35/100,000) than females (42. 70/100,000). The highest attack rate (128.3/100,000} occurred among patients aged 10 — 14 years. The health staff of Kuala Terengganu and Marang District Health Ojice had investigated a total of 229 case. Most cases (62.4%) occurred amongst school children. A case control study was carried out amongst 35 cases that were matched with 71 controls by age group, class and sex, to identyy the potential source of injection. The results indicated that eating fried noodle with shelh‘ish significantly increased the risk of being infected during the outbreak (OR 16.38[4.2l-74.53]).
Mental nerve neuropathy is an important presenting complaint that may be encountered by dental surgeons in their daily practise. There are various pathological processes that could bring about this symptom, ranging. from simple dental cause to vague, life threatening diseases. We present three cases of mental paraesthesia of different aetiologies. A literature review on mental nerve neuropathy related to malignancies and infection is discussed. The importance of a thorough chair side history taking, clinical examination and relevant investigations are emphasised in a suggested clinical approach to obtaining the diagnosis of a numb chin.
MeSH terms: Chin; Hypesthesia; Mandibular Nerve; Medical History Taking; Neoplasms; Paresthesia; Peripheral Nervous System Diseases; Surgeons
The habit of chewing betel quid has been practised since ancient times. Although the world has gone through modernization, a significant proportion of people still practices this habit. Substantial evidence has shown that betel quid chewing is associated with the occurrence of oral cancer and precancerous lesions, which has a tremendous psychosocial impact on an individual's life. Thus it becomes significantly important to dentistry to look into this matter. Since betel quid chewing is one of the causes of oral cancer, effort in cha~ging this habit is essential. This article addresses this issue.
MeSH terms: Areca; Dentistry; Habits; Mastication; Mouth Neoplasms; Social Change
Polishing of dental ceramics has become an increasingly important procedure in restorative dentistry as allceramic restorations, which require post-cementation occlusal adjustment, are gaining in popularity. There are numerous studies in both dental and ceramic literature on polishing of dental ceramics and the effects of polishing on their mechanical properties. However, lack of standardization in polishing parameters, precludes comparison among these studies. A clear understanding is lacking of the relative roles and interdependence of handpiece speed, abrasive characteristic, and polishing load. This paper will discuss the mechanism of polishing and review the literature on polishing and its effect on the mechanical properties of ceramic restorations.
This paper attempts to review epidemiological studies of oral cancer and precancer in Malaysia. The defmitions of prevalence, incidence, risk habits and oral cancer and precancers were discussed to better understand' the different types of studies conducted, which would be important in making comparisons between studies. Currently, epidemiological data on oral cancer in Malaysia are sketchy. The only incidence data for oral cancer in Malaysia was reported by Hirayama in 1966, 35 years ago. He estimated that 3.1 new cases per 100,000 population were diagnosed for the year 1963. A number of histopathological data of oral and maxillofacial biopsies were reported. Oral cancer accounted for one-fifth of all oral biopsies. A national study on oral mucosal lesions in Malaysia carried out in 1993/4 reported that there was a variation seen in the occurrence of oral premalignancy among the ethnic groups. The Indians and the indigenous people of Sabah and Sarawak were identified as high risk groups for oral cancer and precancer. It was also observed that both of the ethnic groups chewed betel quid. In conclusion, the epidemiological studies have provided useful data, which may be used in planning for future oral health programmes and research towards enhancing Malaysia's on-going effort in preventing the occurrence of these diseases.
Until today there are still a high percentage of oral microorganisms have not been identified due to inability to isolate using the cultural method. However, identification of uncultivable microorganisms associated with disease will permits clinicians for a more accurate diagnosis, treatment and preventive measures. Unculturable microorganisms are also involved in disease and may account for treatment failure since their susceptibility to antimicrobial agents would be unknown. Thus, the opportunity for a rational approach to the treatment of disease relies on the state of knowledge concerning its aetiology and pathogenesis. Recently developed molecular methods have made it possible to characterise mixed microflora in their entirety, including the substantial numbers of unculturable bacteria. The development of rapid molecular methods like PCR provides a reliable identification of unculturable microorganisms. This paper will review the current literature regarding the PCR techniques used to identify uncultivable oral microflora.
The purpose of this study is to assess the effectiveness of C02 laser in relieving symptoms associated with Oral lichen planus (aLP) and lichenoid lesions (aLL) and the event of healing. Six patients were selected for this study with 13 sites treated. Each lesion was ablated with C02 laser and the wound allowed to heal undisturbed. Prior to treatment, 4 patients had both unprovoked and provoked pain and 2 patients rated for provoked pain only. After laser ablation, five out of six patients treated recorded no pain / 0 pain score. One month post-laser, the treated area was almost the same colour as the surrounding normal mucosa and soft in texture in all but one patient in which there was some fibrosis and residual plaque-like patch. Weconclude that the use of C02 laser in the treatment of aLP and aLL shows positive results in relieving symptoms associated with these lesions.
This is a preliminary survey on cast partial denture designs in the commercial dental laboratories. This survey was carried out for a month in three commercial dental laboratories in Klang Valley and Shah Alam which produce metal dentures in cobalt-chromium. One hundred and ten questionnaires with the designs were collected and analysed. The framework design on the cast was transferred into the design sheet section of the questionnaire. The aim was to investigate communication regarding denture design between clinicians and dental technician and the dentists' dependency on the technician. The design of cobalt-chromium partial dentures in relation to oral health was also assessed. The results indicated that 43.6% of the dentist who used the three laboratories delegated their removable partial design work to the dental technician. More than half of the dentists had some communication with the technicians, and only 18.2 % of the dentists prescribed clear instructions with details of components regarding denture design. Continuing dental education on partial denture design for both clinicians and dental technicians would be of value to provide reinforcement in the knowledge of the basic concept on denture designing. Communication and understanding between both parties would probably improve the quality of cobalt-chromium dentures constructed.
The aim of this study is to evaluate the treatment outcome using fixed and removable appliances, in the Faculty of Dentistry, University of Malaya (U.M.). The study models of 25 fixed and 30 upper removable appliance cases, with complete written records were examined before and after orthodontic treatment using the PAR (Peer Assessment Rating) Index. All the data were analyzed using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) for Windows. Eighty five percent of the cases selected as sample were either 'improved' or 'greatly improved'. Among the 10 cases which were 'greatly improved', all had high pre-treatment PAR points (> 35 PAR points). Conversely, all the eight cases classified as 'worse or no different' were with low pretreatment PAR scores « 20 PAR points). The mean treatment duration in this study was 23. I months, ranging from 2 months to 78 months. The results of this study showed that the standard of treatment in this Faculty were fairly acceptable.
Several national studies have been undertaken to assess the prevalence of fluorosis utilizing the Dean's Index. However, the latest national study undertaken in 1997 (1) had utilized the DDE Index and hence does not allow comparisons to be made with the earlier set of national data. This cross-sectional study was undertaken to evaluate the prevalence of dental fluorosis using the Dean's Index in a sample of 12-13 year-old schoolchildren and to assess the relationship between fluorosis and their caries status. The sampling procedure involved a multistage, clustered and stratified random sampling. The sample comprised of 1519 schoolchildren attending 20 secondary government and governmentaided schools in fluoridated urban and rural areas of Klang District in Peninsular Malaysia. There were 772 males and 747 females. Each subject was administered a questionnaire to elicit the demographic information. Intra-oral examination for dental fluorosis and caries was performed for each subject. The results demonstrated that more than half of the subjects (54 %) had no fluorosis, 13.2% had questionable fluorosis, 31.3% had very mild to mild fluorosis, 1.4% had moderate fluorosis and only 0.1 % exhibited severe fluorosis. The mouth prevalence was 32.8 %. The Community Fluorosis Index was 0.48 indicating a borderline score for public health significance. Fifty-two percent of the children were caries free. The mean DMFT for all subjects was 1.1, F(0.6) being the main component. Although girls had a higher mean DMFT score as compared to boys this difference was not significant. Significant differences in DMFT scores were observed by urbani rural distributions and ethnic groups (p < 0.01). No significant correlation was found between fluorosis and caries status. It is concluded that dental fluorosis does not appear to be a public health problem. Further coordinated in-depth research using similar criterias for assessing dental fluorosis is highly recommended.
This pilot survey was conducted to determine the main reason and the motivating factors which, influence patients in seeking orthodontic treatment. 115 patients aged 11-30 years old were taken from the orthodontic waiting list at the Dental Faculty, University Malaya dated December 1999 - May 2000. A structured questionnaire was designed and the survey of patients was carried out using the telephone. The desire to have a better dental appearance was the main reason (65 %) given by patients who were seeking orthodontic treatment. The most important motivating factor that influences patients in seeking orthodontic treatment was to attain straight teeth (48 %). In conclusion, patients seek orthodontic treatment mainly due to psychological reason, which is to improve dental appearance and aesthetic. Perceived needs of an orthodontic patient should also be taken into consideration before commencing orthodontic treatment to increase chances of mutually satisfying result for both the orthoqontist and patient.
MeSH terms: Esthetics; Faculty, Dental; Humans; Malaysia; Motivation; Personal Satisfaction; Surveys and Questionnaires; Telephone; Universities; Waiting Lists
CWorhexidine gluconate, a dicationic bisbiguanide agent, contains anti-plaque properties. Most chlorhexidine gluconate mouth rinses presently available contain alcohol in varying concentrations. The role of alcohol in these mouth rinses is to act as a preservative and solvent although it may have deleterious effects on the oral epithelium on long term usage. Recently, an alcohol-free 0.12 % w/v chlorhexidine gluconate mouth rinse (Oradex®) has become available in Malaysia. This clinical study is aimed at determining the effects of this alcohol-free product compared to a placebo. A group of 60 meticulously screened subjects were assigned into two groups of 30 each. The first group started using the test product for 2 weeks followed by a washout period of 4 weeks. After this duration, this group used the placebo for a further 2 weeks. The 2nd group underwent similar protocol as the 1st except that this group started with the placebo. Measurements consisting of the following scores were recorded at baseline and after 2 weeks for each group: Plaque, Gingivitis: Papillary Bleeding, Stain and Calculus. Full mouth prophylaxis was carried out for all subjects after measurements at baseline as well as after the 2-week period. They were told to rinse with 15 ml of the designated mouth rinse twice daily for thirty seconds each after tooth brushing. The results of this study indicated that there was significant improvement in the plaque, gingival and papilla bleeding scores compared to the placebo. Stain and calculus scores were significantly increased for the test product when compared to the placebo. In conclusion, this study showed that alcohol-free 0.12 % w/v chlorhexidine gluconate mouth rinse is effective in reducing plaque and gingivitis but causes staining and calculus formation.