ABSTRACT: The influence of systematic dummy-head training with Periopolishe (PP, group A) and Gracey instruments (GRA, group B) on the effectiveness of root debridement was evaluated by Rühling et al., 2002 (9). Their results indicate that independent of the instrument used, untrained operators were only able to debride root surfaces at low levels of effectiveness. It was possible to increase effectiveness to a high level through systematic training in both groups. The aim of the present study was to assess the role of operator motivation and self-assessment on scaling effectiveness. Before baseline, operators were asked to answer a questionnaire rating the expectation of the instrument performance. Four groups of inexperienced operators (n = 11 each) received 10 weeks dummy-head training. In groups A (GRA) and B (PP), training was combined with a motivational programme. Groups C (GRA) and D (PP) received the same training, but no additional motivational programme. In a dummy-head, 10 test teeth were debrided and operators were asked to estimate their effectiveness of debridement at each test day. Effectiveness was calculated as percentage of debrided root area on 10 test teeth at different time points with an image analysis programme (NIH Image) and ANOVA. Two groups were compared using the Mann-Whitney U-test (unpaired) and the Wilcoxon signed ranks test (paired). Motivated groups (A and B) reached about 25% higher debridement results (p < 0.001) and were able to estimate their effectiveness more precisely compared to groups C and D. In the low motivation groups (C and D), overestimation of more than 20% was evident (p < 0.001). The questionnaires revealed underestimation of the GRA instruments and overestimation of PP instruments. Operator motivation and self-assessment greatly influence learning of effective root debridement.
European Journal Of Dental Education 11/2002; 6(4):169-75. · 1.18 Impact Factor