At every dental check up appointment, we carry out oral screening as routine.
The incidence of oral cancer has risen in the UK over recent years and is life threatening if left undiagnosed. Early detection allows for more treatment options with the likelihood of a more favourable outcome.
Signs of oral cancer include changes to the tissues of the mouth and gums as well as difficulties chewing and the way that your natural teeth or dentures close together.
Incidence of oral cancer:
- Oral cancers comprise about 85% of the head and neck category, excluding brain cancers.
- Death rate is higher than that for cervical, Hodgkins, lymph nodes, laryngeal, thyroid cancers.
- Worldwide over 450,000 new cases found each year.
- Affects both men and women, no symptoms at early stages, death rate is high because it is routinely discovered late in its development when already metastasised to lymph nodes of the neck or other location.
- Around 90% are squamous cell carcinomas.
- Increasingly occurring in those under 40 years with most likely causes:
alcohol and smoking, human papilloma virus infection, especially HPV16 virus.
- Other contributing factors may include genetic predisposition & other inflammatory disease of the mouth.
- 57% survival rate at 5 years from diagnosis.