Assessment of Sharp Injuries among Cameroonian Dental Professionals

Author Information

Agbor M.A.1, Azodo C.C.2

  1. Dental Department, Nkwen Baptist Health Centre, Bamenda, Cameroon

  2. Department of Periodontics, University of Benin Teaching Hospital, Nigeria

Corresponding author:

Dr. Agbor Michael Ashu, P.O. Box 1, Bamenda, Cameroon. E-mail:


Objective: To assess the prevalence of sharp injury among Cameroonian dental professionals.
Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional study of 41 dental professionals recruited from 4 out of 10 provinces in Cameroon was conducted in the second half of 2009. A self-administered questionnaire was used to capture information on demography, nature, frequency and causes of sharp injury, post-exposure prophylaxis practice and methods of sharps disposal.
Results: Thirty-nine dental professionals (95.1%) had experienced sharp injury with 35.9% being once in the preceding 12 months. Needlestick was the most common sharp injury experienced by the respondents. Most of the injuries occurred during recapping of the needle. Activity during which injuries occurred was not significantly associated with type of practice. Twenty three (59.0%) respondents received post-exposure prophylaxis after sustaining sharp injury. Proper disposal of sharps in a special container was observed by 35 (85.4%) of the respondents.
Conclusion: The prevalence of sharp injuries among Cameroonian dental professionals was high. This justifies an urgent need for concerted effort to reduce sharp injuries in Cameroon dental practices through a comprehensive sharp injury prevention program including work place safety, employee training on guidelines adherence, safe recapping and disposal systems.


The Annals of African Surgery is the official publication of the Surgical Society of Kenya.


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