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Dental Tribune United Kingdom Edition

T he University of Mary- land’s School of Dentist- ry has teamed up with the University of Maryland R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center for training future den- tists to respond efficiently and effectively to life-threatening medical emergencies in a den- tal setting. To enhance the School of Dentistry’s current course work in prevention and management of medical emergencies, the School has added a partnership with the center known world- wide as simply ‘Shock Trauma.’ “It is a pioneer of trauma care and is dedicated to treating the critically sick and severely injured with ground-breaking research and innovative medi- cal procedures with one goal in mind, to save lives,” said Thom- as Grissom, MD, FCCM, associ- ate professor of anesthesiology at the School of Medicine. ‘Sim Man,’ a computerised, life-size human simulation mannequin utilised by Shock Trauma will be part of the den- tal training, according to Gary Hack, DDS, director of clini- cal simulation at the School of Dentistry. Sim Man, made by the Laerdal Medical Corp., elec- tronically responds to treat- ments. The mannequin actu- ally talks back to attending health care professionals, offers pulse and blood pressure rates, responds to cardiopul- monary resuscitation (CPR), simulates lung function, and has other features like those of a live patient in a dental chair, including becoming cyanotic, wheezing, or exhibiting pupil- lary responses. “This new program will dra- matically improve our students’ ability to respond to medical emergencies, and my hope is that we will be able to expand this program to include train- ing on how to screen for diabe- tes,” said Hack. While a student or resident attends to a simulated emer- gency such as a heart attack on Sim Man, faculty instruc- tors can monitor and change the mannequin’s vital signs, which are displayed on stand- ard monitors that are found in dental offices, via the comput- er. This control unit can access the depth and effectiveness of chest compressions being ap- plied during CPR to the man- nequin by the student, as well as pulse rate, blood pressure levels, and more. “The exercise teaches resi- dents to stay calm and act de- cisively during an emergency,” says Gary Kaplowitz, DDS, who is the AEGD associate direc- tor. Shock Trauma’s Sim Man is much more than a plastic man- nequin. He weighs 160 pounds and simulates realistic and dy- namic patient conditions. The Sim Man exercise in- cludes an immediate debriefing. Kaplowitz said: “I think many dentists are not fully pre- pared for medical emergen- cies, though they are aware of the possibilities. These things do happen and you never know when. If a dental patient goes unconscious in the chair, you are it,” he told dental students, residents and faculty at the de- briefing. DT ‘Shock trauma’ to help train dental students Sim Man in action A collaborative research project that could significant- ly improve our understanding of the role of Candida albicans in gum and jaw disease has been awarded $2 million by the US National Institutes for Health (NIH). Howard Jenkinson, Pro- fessor of Oral Microbiol- ogy and Head of Research at the University of Bristol’s School of Oral and Dental Sciences, has been funded by the NIH since 2006 for re- search into Candida albicans - the species of Candida that causes most fungal infections. This five-year programme renewal is to develop fur- ther research into yeast in- fections and better ways to control them. The most common fun- gal infections in humans are caused by Candida. More generally known as yeast in- fections, these conditions are uncomfortable for a healthy person, but deadly for some- one whose immune system is weak or who is vulnerable af- ter surgery. More than 50 per cent of the population have suffered from yeast infections at one time or another and this is one reason why Candida generates considerable interest from a public health perspective. Professor Jenkinson said: “Candida albicans are a major concern in public health. They are quite resilient to antimi- crobial agents and some of the newer drugs are not yet freely available. Once Can- dida are growing in the body, they are very difficult to clear. Therefore, one of our research goals is to find new ways of blocking the ability of Candida to colonise humans.” Candida yeasts can live quietly inside the human body for many years. But they have the potential to sudden- ly cause disease, often in re- sponse to antibiotic treatment, hormonal changes, or reduced immunity. Candida become troublesome when they grow filaments known as hyphae that penetrate the body tis- sues. They cause painful con- ditions such as ‘sore mouth’ in denture users, but more serious problems if the fungi get into the blood stream and infect the organs. This condi- tion, known as candidaemia, may be fatal. Professor Jenkinson’s work has observed that Can- dida albicans interact very closely with several different types of bacteria in the human body. These help Candida col- onise and stimulate them to produce hyphae. Professor Jenkinson added: “We have developed models to study microbes growing together under conditions that mimic those in the body. We do this by flowing body fluids like saliva through small incubation chambers in which Candida and bacteria are growing together. One of our new ventures is to bet- ter understand the role of Candida albicans in periodon- tal (gum and jaw) disease. There is evidence that Can- dida may be involved togeth- er with bacteria in dissolving away bone, causing teeth to fall out.” While the main focus of this work is oral disease, the research findings will apply to Candida infections in other parts of the body. Professor Jenkinson’s col- laborators include Dr Rich Lamont, University of Lou- isville; Dr Aras Kadioglu, University of Liverpool; Dr Mark Ramsdale, University of Exeter; Dr Mark Jepson, Biochemistry and Dr Michele Barbour, School of Oral and Dental Sciences, University of Bristol. DT $2 million for research into oral disease T he Children and Young People’s Health Out- comes Forum is gath- ering views from children, young people, parents, car- ers, doctors, nurses and oth- er professionals involved in providing care to children on the health outcomes that matter most for children and young people and how the dif- ferent parts of the health sys- tem will work together to de- liver these. It wants to hear views on four particular areas: • acutely ill children • mental health • children with disabilities and long-term conditions • public health To take part, visit the De- partment of Health website. uk/children-say/ Please send your views and comments by 30 April 2012. The Forum will report to the Government with inde- pendent advice that will in- form the Children and Young People’s Health Outcomes Strategy. The Strategy will ensure that the outcomes measured are the ones that matter most to children, young people, their families and the profes- sionals responsible for their care. DT Have your say T o celebrate 10 years as the UK’s leading mouth cancer charity, the Mouth Cancer Foundation has launched its brand new look website at www.mouthcancer- Speaking on the new look, Founder of the charity, Dr Vi- nod Joshi, said: “The success of the Mouth Cancer Foundation is down to the interactive function- ality of its website which mem- bers find really useful. There is a great sense of community online. The new website is fresh, inform- ative and bursting with informa- tion to help patients and carers.” In recent months the char- ity has experienced a record number of hits to its website. The online members’ forum is also a hugely popular site for the charity. As well as visitors going to the site for informa- tion, they regularly request leaf- lets and merchandise on all as- pects of head and neck cancers. The signs, symptoms and how to care for those with head and neck cancer are the hottest topics. DT Mouth Cancer Foundation website gets new look March 26-April 1, 20122 News United Kingdom Edition