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The objectives of this study is to evaluate the suitability of full cup test (FCT), numeric pain rating scale (NPRS), and visual analogue scale (VAS) to assess pain after surgical removal of lower third molar and to identify which of these three pain scales is the easiest to use. A total of 50 patients, age between 18 to 30 years who underwent minor oral surgery for removal of impacted third molar were sampled in Faculty of Dentistry, University of Malaya. The patients were provided with forms containing three pain scales and they were required to mark each pain scales – FCT, NPRS and VAS daily for three consecutive post-operative days. The forms were collected a week later when patients came back for review. The validity between NPRS with VAS, FCT with NPRS and FCT with VAS were tested using Spearman rank correlation coefficient. Results showed that the correlation coefficient values for each pair were very high and significant. The findings when comparing Day 1, Day 2 and Day 3 and the combination for those three days showed no significant differences. No evidences indicated that the findings for Day 1 were more superior in comparison with other days. In conclusion, FCT was as valid as NPRS and VAS. The pain scale which was claimed to be the easiest to use by patients was NPRS, followed by FCT and VAS. However, further studies are needed to investigate the reliability and sensitivity of FCT.
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