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Int J Paediatr Dent. 2019 May;29(3):332-344. doi: 10.1111/ipd.12453. Epub 2019 Jan 24.

Development of a parents' short form survey of their children's oral health.

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Department of Biostatistics, Fielding School of Public Health, University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California.
Department of Medicine, David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California.
Public Health & Community Dentistry, School of Dentistry, University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California.



Parents play an important role in their children's oral health behaviors, provide oral health access, initiate prevention, and coping strategies for health care.


This paper develops a short form (SF) to assist parents to evaluate their children's oral health status using Patient-Reported Outcome Measurement Information System (PROMIS) framework that conceptualized health as physical, mental, and social components.


Surveys of parents were conducted at dental clinics in Los Angeles County, together with an on-site clinical examination by dentists to determine clinical outcomes, Children's Oral Health Status Index (COHSI), and referral recommendations (RRs). Graded response models in item response theory were used to create the SF. A toolkit including SF, demographic information, and algorithms was developed to predict the COHSI and RRs.


The final SF questionnaire consists of eight items. The square root mean squared error for the prediction of COHSI is 7.6. The sensitivity and specificity of using SF to predict immediate treatment needs (binary RRs) are 85% and 31%.


The parent SF is an additional component of the oral health evaluation toolkit that can be used for oral health screening, surveillance program, policy planning, and research of school-aged children and adolescents from guardian perspectives.


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