Attitudes and practices of dentists treating HIV+ patients in the era of new antiretroviral therapy: A 12-year update

Michele Giuliani, Romeo Patini, Lorenzo Lo Muzio, Giuseppe Troiano, Vito Carlo Alberto Caponio, Daniela Adamo, Francesca Conti, Patrizia Gallenzi, Carlo Lajolo

Risultato della ricerca: Contributo in rivistaArticolo in rivista


During the first years of the HIV pandemic, the virus diffusion was responsible for discriminatory behavior from medical and dental care workers towards HIV-infected patients, as described by our research group in 2009. The aim of the current study was to provide an update on the previous data, investigating the presence of discriminatory behaviors, evaluating the level of dentists’ knowledge about the virus and proposing strategies to be implemented to avoid professional exposure and cross-infections. This study was a cross-sectional, online, national survey on dentists, members of the main national dental associations (ANDI and AIO). The questionnaire was divided into four major sections, with the same structure as the questionnaire administered in 2009. The differences between groups were analyzed using the software program IBM SPSS Statistic, version 21.0. A total of 1054 dentists filled out the questionnaire completely. Among them 0.04% revealed a discriminatory attitude towards HIV-infected patients. The univariate analysis showed that discrimination towards HIV + patients was statistically associated with personal experiences and the level of fear associated with treating them (p = 0.001) and with the type of dental treatments performed (p = 0.01). This cross-sectional study revealed the persistence of dentists who still discriminate against HIV + patients, and the percentage of these dentists was only slightly lower than that in the previous survey (4.3% in the present survey vs. 4.5%). The survey also depicted other information worthy of consideration, such as a perceived ability to detect HIV + patients based on their appearance, complaints about not having received adequate training for treating HIV + individuals, and a lack of scientific knowledge about the virus. From the evidence reported by the present survey, it can be argued that universities, professional boards, and training institutions must increase their efforts in spreading correct knowledge about HIV among all dental care workers.
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)18751-18752
Numero di pagine2
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2023


  • Attitude of health personnel
  • Dentists
  • HIV infections
  • Social stigma
  • Surveys and questionnaires


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