Oral cancer is often deemed the “forgotten disease,” because it kills more people than testicular cancer, cervical cancer and cancer of the brain each year and receives little publicity in return. How many little sores do we find in our mouths? Most of the time we ignore them and they simply go away. But sometimes our mouths keep secrets. Each year, over 30,000 Americans contract oral cancer. Found early, oral cancer's 5-year survival rate is good: approximately 83%. Found late, oral cancer's 5-year survival rate is poor: approximately 32%. Clearly, finding oral cancer in its early stages is key to survival.
Many people believe that if they abstain from tobacco and alcohol use, oral cancer will not affect them. Tobacco and alcohol use does contribute to oral cancer; however, 25% of those diagnosed abstain from both substances.
Velscope is an effective tool for assisting in the discovery of oral abnormalities. The Velscope helps us identify oral disease early, while it's still easy to treat. One of the most important advantages of oral cancer screenings is to help locate areas that might, if not treated, progress to oral cancer. Velscope helps us:
- Improve our assessment of your overall oral health
- Ensure that the delicate tissues of your mouth are healthy
- Protect your from oral disease, including oral cancer
How does the VELscope® work?
The VELscope® blue light is shone into the mouth stimulating natural fluorescence in the soft tissues to expose changes and lesions that would otherwise be invisible to the naked eye. Lesions and other precancerous and cancerous tissues are easily noticeable because they appear much darker under the specialized light. The VELscope® exam takes only two to three minutes with no rinses, stains or discomfort. It is a painless and noninvasive procedure that saves many lives every single year.
Our office is proud to provide a high level of care for our patients. Please ask us about a Velscope oral cancer screening.