Oral Cancer Exam

Oral cancer is a growing concern. In Canada, there were more than 4,000 new cases in 2013 with a five-year survival rate of only 63%—which is average amongst other forms of cancer. However, if diagnosed early, oral cancer can be successfully treated.

Our team is trained and offers an oral cancer exam to help diagnose for early onset. There are many types of oral cancer, including teratoma, adenocarcinoma and melanoma, and all these begin with no real obvious symptoms. The most common form of oral cancer is malignant squamous cell carcinoma, which typically originates in the lip and mouth tissue. Other common areas for oral cancer to begin are: tongue, salivary glands, throat, gums and face.

If you have any concerns or want to find out more information, book an oral cancer exam at Higson Dental Group today.

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What to Expect

The oral cancer exam is a routine procedure and completely painless. The first thing we look for are common signs such as red patches and sores. Red flags include red patches on the base of the mouth or front of the tongue, or bleeding sores that do not seem to heal. Another symptom is leukoplakia, which is a hardened white or gray, slightly raised lesion that can develop inside the mouth. Also, general soreness, lumps or thickening of tissue in the throat or mouth are other symptoms we examine.

If we are concerned by any abnormalities, we will implement a treatment plan that is right for you. In most situations, we send images to an Oral Pathologist at the University of Alberta Hospital in Edmonton for tentative diagnosis.  If cancer is a reality, you and your family will be presented with a range of treatment options that may include: excision, radiation therapy and chemotherapy. An important fact: 75% of oral cancers are linked with avoidable behaviors such as smoking, tobacco use and excessive alcohol consumption.