Objectives: This study characterized the self-reported dental utilization practice of long-term survivors of childhood cancer, a group at increased risk for treatment-induced dental abnormalities.
Methods: 9,434 survivors and a comparison group of 3,858 siblings completed a 289-item survey that included a question on when their last dental visit occurred.
Results: Within the last year 60.4 percent of survivors reported a dental visit. The groups less likely to report a recent dental visit include minority subjects, subjects with low levels of educational attainment, subjects with annual household incomes < dollar 20,000, and those without health insurance. No significant differences between survivors and siblings were seen. Male survivors exposed to cranial radiation were slightly more likely than other male survivors to report a recent dental visit (OR = 1.27, 95% CI = 1.12, 1.44).
Conclusions: The dental utilization practices among survivors of childhood cancer are below recommended levels, even among those at highest risk for dental abnormalities.