Survey of knowledge of school children towards the prevalence, severity, management of maxillofacial injuries, and rescue skills in the event of a dog bite

Deepika Pai, Abhay Taranath Kamath, K Pratibha Panduranga, Ramchandra Kamath, Kalyana P Chakravarthy, Rashmi Nayak, K Chitra, Saurabh Kumar
Journal of the Indian Society of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry 2018, 36 (4): 334-338

Background: Maxillofacial injuries are reported commonly in children encountering animal/dog attack. The level of knowledge of children on such events can form a sound basis for the prevention of maxillofacial injuries resulting from dog bites/attacks.

Aim: This study aims to assess the knowledge of children on maxillofacial injuries resulting from dog bites, their management, and rescue skills to be used during the event of a dog attack.

Settings and Design: The study is a cross-sectional questionnaire survey.

Material and Methods: Seven hundred children aged 7-12 years participated in the study. A questionnaire consisting of 21 questions assessed the common site and management of injury resulting from dog bites, the source of exposure, and the knowledge of children on rescue skills to be used in the event of dog attack. This was followed by an awareness program to educate the children on rescue skills and management of dog bite injuries.

Statistical Analysis: Descriptive statistics were calculated for all the variables.

Results: A significant percentage of dog bite injuries occurred on the face and hands in children. Boys were more common victims. Familiar dogs inflicted injuries to the children commonly than stray dogs. The children lacked knowledge on the management of dog bite injuries; however, they were aware of rabies and its prevention. The children were not well aware of rescue skills to be used in the event of a dog attack.

Conclusion: Children are innocent and behavior of dogs are unpredictable hence they become victims of the dog attacks. Educating children on safe animal behavior can prove vital in reducing gruesome maxillofacial injuries resulting from dog attacks.

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