Oral Cancer Exam

Orlando Center For Cosmetic Dentistry

Jose Marcano, DMD

Cosmetic Dentist & Implant Dentist located in Orlando, FL

Each year, more than 50,000 Americans receive a diagnosis of oral cancer. Though there’s no way to prevent oral cancer entirely, undergoing an oral cancer exam can catch potentially serious problems early on when they respond best to treatment. At the Orlando Center For Cosmetic Dentistry in Orlando, Florida, cosmetic dentist Jose Marcano, DMD, and the team offer oral cancer screening to identify precancerous lesions. To schedule an appointment, click the online booking tool or call the office today.

Oral Cancer Exam Q&A

What is an oral cancer exam?

An oral cancer exam is a preventive screening measure used to detect cancerous lesions and abscesses. Routine oral cancer assessments provide a quick and convenient way to catch potentially life-threatening diseases in their early stages of development. The sooner oral cancer is detected, the easier it is to treat.

Who can benefit from an oral cancer exam?

At Orlando Center For Cosmetic Dentistry, Dr. Marcano and the team recommend oral cancer exams for everyone, especially individuals who are high risk.

Some of the factors that may increase your risk of oral cancer include:

  • Chronic facial sun exposure
  • Drinking excessive amounts of alcohol
  • Using tobacco
  • Having a weakened immune system
  • Poor nutrition
  • Being male

You’re also more likely to develop oral cancer if you’re aged 45 or older.

What does an oral cancer exam involve?

Dr. Marcano and the team conduct oral cancer exams during a regular dental checkup. There’s no special preparation required. During your exam, Dr. Marcano looks at your gums, tongue, and cheeks for the presence of red and white patches or visible sores. If Dr. Marcano notices anything unusual, he uses gloved hands to feel them for lumps or other irregularities.

If Dr. Marcano believes you’re at risk of oral cancer, he might order additional tests, including:

Mouth rinse

During this type of oral cancer screening, you rinse your mouth with a solution called toluidine blue. Cancerous lesions absorb the dye, alerting Dr. Marcano to the presence of oral cancer.

Auto-fluorescent light

During this type of oral cancer screening, Dr. Marcano assesses your gums, tongue, and cheeks with an auto-fluorescent light. Healthy, non-cancerous tissues appear dark under the light, while abnormal tissues appear white.

VELScope® Vx enhanced oral assessment

The VELScope Vx is an advanced treatment device that helps visualize abnormal oral tissues undetected by the naked eye. It enables Dr. Marcano and the team to pinpoint potentially cancerous lesions early on before they present obvious symptoms.

What if my oral cancer exam detects a problem?

If Dr. Marcano and the team detect abnormalities during your oral cancer exam, they schedule a follow-up appointment two weeks later. If the lesion in question is still present or it continues to grow in size, Dr. Marcano takes a biopsy. He sends your biopsy to a dental laboratory that assesses it for the presence of cancerous cells.

Don’t wait to request an oral cancer exam at Orlando Center For Cosmetic Dentistry. Schedule an appointment with the online booking tool or call the office today.