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Usability evaluation of four commercial dental computer-based patient record systems

Conducted heuristic and usability testing of four major dental computer-based patient record systems

The usability of dental computer-based patient record (CPR) systems has not been studied, despite early evidence that poor usability is a problem for dental CPR system users at multiple levels.We conducted formal usability tests of four dental CPR systems by using a purposive sample of four groups of five novice users. We measured task outcomes (correctly completed, incorrectly completed and incomplete) in each CPR system while the participants performed nine clinical documentation tasks, as well as the number of usability problems identified in each CPR system and their potential relationship to task outcomes. We also reviewed the software application design aspects responsible for these usability problems.

Type of project: academic


Involved Persons:

Project Leader: Dr. Thankam Paul Thyvalikakath (University of Pittsburgh School of Dental Medicine)
Other involved People: Dr. Titus Schleyer Dr. Valerie Monaco Dr. Himabindhu Thambuganipalle Mr. Michael Dziabiak
Beenish Chaudry ( star_blue)


Is the project funded?yes
Funding source:NIH awards 5T15LM07059-17 (NLM), 1 KL2 RR024154-02 (NCRR)

Other information:

Duration of project:2 years
Papers related to project:Thyvalikakath TP, Monaco V, Thambuganipalle HB, Schleyer T. A usability evaluation of four commercial dental computer-based patient record systems. J Am Dent Assoc. 2008 Dec;139(12):1632-42. Thyvalikakath TP, Monaco V, Thambuganipalle H, Schleyer T. A Comparative study of heuristic evaluation and usability testing methods. Stud Health Technol Inform. 2009;143:322-7.

DIOC user:

Thankam Thyvalikakath (22 star_red), University of Pittsburgh
Thankam Thyvalikakath's interests: clinical decision support, practice management, computer-based patient records, patients and computers/consumer health informatics, evidence-based dentistry/electronic information resources, diagnostic and therapeutic technologies


Beenish Chaudry (1 ), 03/23/2012:
I am interested in this project.


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