Oral Cancer – One of the Most Common Cancers Worldwide

Oral cancer is one of the most common cancers worldwide. 90% of oral cancers are squamous cell carcinomas (OSCC). The five year survival rate of OSCC is 60% and has not improved significantly in several decades. Survival is over 90% if detected in early stages, but unfortunately, this disease is often recognized in late stages.

Our office performs oral examinations on each patient and we combine this exam with, non invasive Velscope technology. This can help to detect some of these early stage oral cancers.

High risk populations used to be 40+ year old, smoker and drinker. This has changed dramatically over the past 5-10 years. Under 25 year olds are now beginning to account for many more cases of oral cancer (HPV may be a cause of this).

A new study at the Univ of Michigan has begun testing saliva for detection of OSCC markers. Previously, false negatives of preliminary testing and invasive biopsy was the only way to confirm malignancy. Now, a patient’s saliva can be tested prior to making decisions about definitive diagnosis and biopsy options.

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