The fact is, every hour of every day, someone in the United States dies of oral cancer, which is the sixth most common diagnosed form of the disease. The five-year survival rate is only 50 percent, and oral cancer is one of the few cancers whose survival rate has not improved over the past decades.
This grim statistic may make you think that oral cancer is a particularly deadly form, when in fact the high death rate has more to do with how late in its development oral cancer is detected. The symptoms of oral pathology are often so subtle in the early stages that routine screening is the key to early detection and survival. In our continuing efforts to provide the most advanced technology and highest quality care, we proudly screen our patients for oral cancer.
Are you at risk for oral cancer?
Anyone can develop oral cancer, but some people are at a higher risk. These high-risk groups include those over the age of 50 and men, who are twice as likely as women to develop the disease. Smoking or chewing smokeless tobacco products, consuming alcohol excessively and constant exposure to the sun at a young age are also risk factors.
How is oral cancer detected?
We suggest our patients perform a monthly self-examination to check for unusual red or white patches, sores, lumps or thickenings anywhere inside the mouth, on the lips or in the throat and neck area.
We encourage you to give us a call if you find any of these symptoms or if you have trouble swallowing or experience a chronic sore throat and hoarseness. During your visit, we will inspect the oral tissues and neck to determine if abnormalities are present.
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