Document Type: Research Articles
Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Nile College, Khartoum, Sudan.
Department of Computer and Research, Khartoum Teaching Dental Hospital, Khartoum, Sudan.
Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, University of Khartoum, Khartoum, Sudan.
Objective: This study was aimed to assess oral cancer awareness among a selected Sudanese population and to evaluate their knowledge and treatment seeking behavior. Methods: A questionnaire- based survey was performed on the general population who attended the oral cancer awareness campaigns carried between 2015 and 2016 in different geographic areas of the Sudan. It was focusing on general awareness of oral cancer, oral cancer risk factors, oral cancer clinical signs/symptoms and treatment seeking behavior. Data were entered by Microsoft excel 2007 and analyzed by SPSS (version 20) using chi square test with P value Result: There were 1,370 participants, 634(46.3%) were males and 736(53.7%) were females. The responses of participants revealed that 66.6% have heard about oral cancer and the media was the common source of information (75.7%). Of all participants only 45.3% mentioned that they don’t have enough knowledge on oral cancer. Some participants believe that oral cancer is treatable (66.5%) whilst 30.4% respond by I don’t know. More than 80% of the respondents were aware that smokeless tobacco (toombak) is a risk factor for oral cancer. While 60.1% were aware of alcohol as a risk factor and 66.2% were aware of smoking as a risk factor. When qui square test was done, smokers were found to be the least to seek help in comparison to non-smokers. The same result was obtained from alcohol consumers but it was different in snuff dippers, as the latter response was similar to that of the non-snuff dippers. Conclusion: This study revealed a level of around 66.6% of oral cancer awareness in different states of Sudan. Counseling sessions should be conducted when necessary with further investigations to find out the reasons behind the continued practice of high risk habits, despite knowledge.