Oral Cancer

Overview
  • Oral Cancers are almost always squamous cell carcinomas and so probably arise from the squamous epithelium of the oral mucosa. Oral Cancers tend to occur on the border of the lower lip, floor of the oral cavity, or lateral margins of the tongue. Although survival is excellent with early discovery, lesions are typically not noticed by individuals until late in the disease course and thus oral cancers are associated with very poor five-year survival.
Epidemiology
  • Oral Cancers usually affect individuals older than 40yo and displays a number of risk factors. Individuals with a previous history of leukoplakia are at greater risk as leukoplakia may represent a pre-cancerous lesion. Infection with HPV, especially with serotypes 16 and 18, increases the risk of developing oral carcinomas. Chronic chemical irritation from long-term smoking or alcohol abuse significantly increases risk of developing oral carcinomas as well as chronic physical irritation from poorly fitting dentures.