Periodontal Procedures in Birmingham, AL
Oral Cancer Diagnosis and Biopsies
A biopsy is a small sample of tissue that your doctor takes from a suspicious area. The tissue is them sent to a specialized doctor, called a pathologist, who examines this sample under a microscope to check for cancer.
Oral Cancer Exams
What a lot of people don’t realize is that every time they visit our office for an exam or professional cleaning, we’ll also be looking for early signs of oral cancer.
Why do we automatically perform this service? For two reasons. First, we care about the health of our patients in every regard. But equally important is the fact that oral cancer has the lowest 5-year survival rate of almost any cancer in the human body.
Early Diagnosis is Paramount
Many of us have been told about the importance of visiting our dentist every six months for a dental cleaning and a professional exam. Some of us might have thought the timing of these appointments was for the sole purpose of keeping dental decay and gum disease at bay. But there’s another reason. Early diagnosis of oral cancer.
Symptoms Of Oral Cancer
Although the only true way to diagnose oral cancer is through a tissue biopsy, following are some of the early signs that you should come in for a screening:
- A lump or thickening in your cheek
- A white or red patch on your gums, tongue, tonsil, or lining of your mouth
- A sore throat or a feeling that something is caught in your throat
- Difficulty chewing or swallowing
- Difficulty moving your jaw or tongue
- Numbness of your tongue or other areas of your mouth
- Swelling of your jaw that causes your dentures to suddenly become uncomfortable