Northbrook, Illinois – Northbrook Court Dental Associates (http://www.northbrookcourtdental.com) has announced it now offers oral cancer screenings. Thousands of Americans are diagnosed each year with oral and pharyngeal (throat) cancer. Both are life-threatening diseases. Early detection can result in less aggressive surgical procedures and increase treatment success.
“Most oral cancers are slow growing squamous cell carcinomas,” says Dr. Michael Vold, founder of Northbrook Court Dental Associates. “If the tumor is discovered when it is still small, it can usually be surgically removed.”
Oral cancer is caused by viruses such as the Human papillomavirus (especially HPV-16), as well as UV exposure, toxins or a diet with very little fruits or vegetables. Excessive smoking and alcohol consumption over the age of 50 can also lead to oral cancer. Sometimes the disease is the result of cancer that has metastasized in another part of the body.
Common signs of the disease include lesions, ulcers, lumps and red or white patches in the mouth. Oral cancer often causes difficulty chewing and swallowing, earaches, facial numbness and may even affect a person’s ability to speak. As the disease progresses, it can become increasingly painful, and produce sensations such as tingling and burning in the mouth and on the tongue.
According to Vold, a dentist can usually see or feel the cancer. The diagnosis is then confirmed by a tissue biopsy. Oral cancer treatments range from various surgical procedures to chemotherapy and radiation therapy.
“We look for indicators of oral cancer every time a patient comes in for an exam,” says Vold. “Patients are also advised to contact our office if a lump or lesion in the mouth doesn’t go away in two weeks.”
For more information on oral cancer, speak with a Northbrook dentist at Northbrook Court Dental Associates, or visit the Northbrook dentistry office’s website at http://www.northbrookcourtdental.com. To make an appointment for an oral cancer screening, call the office today at 847-272-2900.
Dr. Michael Vold has a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Wisconsin (1963), a Doctor of Dental Surgery degree from Northwestern University Dental School (1967) and a Juris Doctor degree from DePaul University College of Law (1980). He served as a dentist in the U.S. Air Force and taught as an Assistant Professor at the University of Illinois, College of Dentistry. Dr. Vold is a member of the American Dental Association and Illinois State Dental Society, as well as a recipient of numerous professional honors and awards.