Dentist Andover MA - Oral Cancer Screening
Approximately 54 thousand people in the United States will be newly diagnosed with oral cancer in 2021. For decades there has been an increase in the rate of occurrence of oral and oropharyngeal cancers. The pathways in which people can get oral cancer historically has been tobacco and alcohol use, but a relatively newly identified etiology (since 1999) has been through exposure of the HPV- 16 (Human Papilloma Virus).
145 new individuals each day are diagnosed, and a person dies from oral cancer every hour of every day.
Early detection is key and the best way to do that is with biannual exams and oral cancer
screenings. At Andover Comprehensive Dental Care we use an oral cancer screening light that uses fluorescence technology to allow changes in the oral cavity and lesions to be detected.
ADVANTAGES OF USING FLUORESCENCE TECHNOLOGY
Detects problems that can not be seen with white light
Detects lesions, white and red patches
Exposes precancerous and cancerous tissue
Quick and painless examination
Helps diagnose oral cancer in its earliest stages, exponentially increasing the chance of survival
HOW IS THE ORAL CANCER SCREENING PERFORMED?
The dentist and hygienist will do a visual exam of the mouth first checking the gums, tongue, floor of the mouth, cheeks, palate, and back of the throat. They will then use the oral cancer screening light to look at the same areas. Healthy tissue will fluoresce green and any area of inflammation or change will appear dark.
If something is visualized we make note of the area and findings at that visit and have you
return in 2 weeks to recheck the area. If it is still present we would then refer you to an oral surgeon to evaluate the area further.
If you have any questions about the oral cancer screening please contact our office.