Oral Cancer Orlando – Dr. Ronald Trevisani

Orlando Oral Pathology – Head, Neck and Oral Cancer

According to the Oral Cancer Foundation, nearly 42,000 Americans will be diagnosed with oral or pharyngeal cancer in 2014. Oral cancer unfortunately has a higher-than-average mortality rate because it is often discovered in its late stages.

Oral and maxillofacial surgeons like Dr. Ronald Trevisani are trained to detect and diagnose oral cancer and prevent it from progressing. Early intervention is critical to achieving remission.

More about Oral Cancer

Oral cancer can originate in any area of the mouth, also known as the oral cavity. This includes the lips, inside of the lips/cheeks, teeth, gums, most of the tongue, bottom of the mouth and the roof of the mouth (called the hard palate). Oral cancer can also develop in the area of the throat just behind the mouth, called the oropharynx.

Anyone can get oral cancer, but the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (AAOMS) warns that several factors could increase the chances of developing it. Risk factors include:

  1. Heavy drinking – about 70 percent of people with oral cancer drink heavily
  2. Regular smoking/using chewing or spit tobacco – nearly 80 percent use tobacco in some form (e.g., cigarettes, snuff, chewing tobacco)
  3. Human papilloma virus (HPV) – strong link between version 16 and an increased incidence of oral cancer
  4. Inadequate nutrition – diets low in fruits and vegetables
  5. Poor oral hygiene

Some experts believe that males are twice as likely to develop oral cancer than females, but the American Cancer Society says the difference in gender is becoming less prominent as more women use tobacco products and drink. Also, most people with oral cancer are over the age of 55; the average age at diagnosis is 62.

Checking for Signs of Oral Cancer

It’s a good idea to perform a self-examination every month to look for signs of oral cancer. The AAOMS recommends using a bright light and mirror to look at and feel all of the structures of the mouth, including the inside of the lips/cheeks, gums, roof of the mouth and tongue. Feel both sides of the neck, checking for any lumps or enlarged lymph nodes.

The following could indicate a cancerous growth:

  • Red and/or white lesions (patches of oral tissue)
  • Persistent sore that bleeds easily/doesn’t heal
  • Lump or thickening on the skin lining the inside of the mouth
  • Mass or lump in the neck
  • Any other suspicious lump or sore
  • Difficulty chewing or swallowing
  • Difficulty moving the tongue or jaw
  • Chronic hoarseness

The early stages of oral cancer can be pain-free, so it’s important to regularly perform a visual check for problem areas, and to visit a dentist regularly for a professional examination.

If you notice any of these symptoms on your own, do not ignore them and hope they will go away. Schedule an appointment with Dr. Trevisani right away, so he can examine the area of concern. Using a variety of diagnostic technology, he will evaluate your mouth and provide a diagnosis. If you’ve been diagnosed with oral cancer, Dr. Trevisani will explore your treatment options with you, and help you select an approach that is suited to your individual needs.

To schedule an appointment with Dr. Trevisani, please contact us today.