Oral cancer is included in head and neck cancers. They form about 85 per cent of head and neck cancers. Oral cancer most commonly occurs on the lips (usually the lower lip), or tongue. Other parts of the oral cavity that can be involved in oral cancer are inside the mouth, back of the throat, the tonsils or salivary glands.
Risk factors for oral cancer
There are many types of oral cancers but most often they are squamous cell carcinomas. Oral cancer affects men more than women, and the risk increases with age (more common in people older than 40 years of age). Other risk factors for oral cancer include:
Symptoms of oral cancer may not be recognised in early stages in many patients. Some symptoms suggestive of oral cancer include:
If you have any bothersome oral symptom it is better that you don’t ignore it. Early diagnosis and treatment improves the chances of cure.
Treatment in early stages can cure oral cancer in about 90 per cent of the patients. Treatment options for patients with oral cancer include surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy. Surgery for oral cancer, aims to remove the cancer completely if possible, but with minimal damage to the rest of the mouth. Before starting treatment for any oral cancer any dental problem is treated.
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