A study on Awareness and Knowledge of Surgical Site Infection among Dental Patients in a Nigerian Tertiary Hospital


  • Igbinosa L Department of Family Dentistry, University of Benin Teaching Hospital, Benin-City, Nigeria
  • Edetanlen EB Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, University of Benin Teaching Hospital, Benin-City, Nigeria
  • Babalola YO Department of Family Dentistry, University of Benin Teaching Hospital, Benin-City, Nigeria




Awareness, Knowledge, Surgical Site Infection, Dental Patients, Nigerian Tertiary Hospital


Background: Risk of surgical site infection (SSI) can be reduced or eliminated if its awareness and knowledge is optimal among patients.

Aim: The aim of this study was to assess the level of awareness and knowledge of SSI among dental patients in a Nigerian Tertiary Hospital.

Materials and methods: This was a cross-sectional study design conducted in hospital setting on adult Nigerian population visiting a tertiary hospital between December, 2022 and February, 2023. The data was collected with a pretested 36-item, structured, close-ended, self-administered and interviewer -administered questionnaires. The data collected were socio demographic characteristics, past admission, days of hospitalization, reason for admission and history of SSI. Other collected data were awareness and knowledge of SSI. Both descriptive and inferential statistics were analyzed. The data was entered and analyzed using the statistical package for the social sciences (SPSS), version 26 (IBM, Armonk, NY, United States of America). A critical probability level (p-value) of <0.05 was used as the cut-off level for statistical significance.

Results: A total of 102 dental patients were interviewed in this study. The age range and the mean age were 20 -76 years and 45.3± 5.1 years respectively. There was slight (55.9%) preponderance of female gender. Only 24(23.5%) respondents had heard of SSI and this was mainly through medical personnel. The majority (76.5%) of the respondents had never seen anyone diagnosed of SSI. Few (6.9%) respondents claimed they were enlightened about SSI prior to surgery. Overall, half (50%) of the respondent had poor knowledge while only 13(12.7%) had good knowledge. Marital status, level of education and previous admission were significantly associated with poor knowledge (p<0.05).

Conclusions: The awareness and knowledge of surgical site infection among patients in this study were relatively poor. Therefore, awareness campaign among Nigerian population can help improved the level of knowledge for better wound care and quality care.