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PATTERN OF IMPACTION OF THIRD MOLARS AMONG PATIENTS WHO VISITED THE UNIVERSITY OF NAIROBI’S ORAL DIAGNOSTIC CLINIC

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SUMMARY

Background

Third molars are the most frequently impacted teeth with the mandibular ones being impacted more than the maxillary ones. They can either be vertically impacted, mesioangularly impacted, horizontally impacted or distoangularly impacted. This study aimed at determining the different patterns of third molar impaction.

Study Design

This was a descriptive cross-sectional study.

Objective

To describe the pattern of third molar impaction among patients who visited the UoN Dental Hospital’s Oral Diagnostic Clinic from 2010-2012.

Study Area

The study was conducted at the Oral Diagnostic Clinic at the UoN Dental Hospital. This clinic is run by the Department of Oral-Maxillofacial Surgery, Oral Pathology and Oral Medicine.

Sampling Method

The study included all OPGs of the patients who were seen at UoN Dental Hospital’s Oral Diagnostic Clinic from January 2010 to June 2012. A checklist was used to collect data.

Sample size

253 OPGs of patients who visited the UoN Dental Hospital’s Oral Diagnostic Clinic from 2010-2012 were evaluated.

Results

Of the 253 OPGs, 51 showed at least one impacted third molar. 40% of impactions were in the mandible and 60% were in the maxilla. 58% of the impactions were on the right and 42% were on the left. The most common angulation of impaction was mesioangular 41% followed by vertical 26% then distoangular 21% and lastly horizontal 12%.The most common level of impaction was level B 55%, followed by level C 36% and then level A 9%.                      

Conclusion

Based on the findings from this study, the following was mentioned. There was a higher frequency of impaction in the mandible than in the maxilla. The most common angulation was the mesioangular angulation. The most common level of impaction was level B. There was a significant difference in impaction between the right and left sides in both jaws with impaction being more frequent on the right side.

Recommendations

  • There is need for further investigations on the pathologies associated with different angulations of impacted third molars.
  • There is need for further studies on management of each angulation pattern of third molar impaction and its associated pathologies.
  • Future studies are required to evaluate the pattern of third molar impaction in the other regions of Kenya

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