Self-report health questionnaire: A necessary and reliable tool in dentistry

Gary D. Klasser, Reny De Leeuw, Romulo J.C. Albuquerque

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


This study was designed to assess whether the number and type of medical conditions elicited by self-report on a questionnaire were equivalent to those obtained through verbal inquiry by blinded trained dentists. The study sample consisted of 100 adult patients who were seeking treatment from the University of Kentucky Orofacial Pain Center. Evaluations occurred between September 2003 and January 2004. Patients completed a standardized medical health questionnaire containing 92 questions. Subsequently, the patients were questioned verbally about their medical history by uniformly trained dentists, using a systems review approach as part of routine clinical protocol. The medical histories obtained by both methods were statistically analyzed using Kappa values, paired and independent sample t-tests. The nature of the questionnaire did not distinguish between past and present conditions, and did not give information regarding onset, severity, duration, and impact of the marked conditions. It was concluded that even though a self-reported health questionnaire is precise and consistent, more detailed information can be obtained by verifying marked medical conditions through a verbal inquiry. Every history and examination should include a combination of both a self-reported medical health questionnaire and a verbal inquiry to aid in diagnosis and treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)348-355
Number of pages8
JournalGeneral Dentistry
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Dentistry


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