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FAQ Frequently asked questions
What is the oral cavity?
The oral cavity is the mouth, including the lips, tongue, teeth, gums, the glands that produce saliva and the lining of the mouth.
What is mouth cancer?
Mouth (or oral) cancer occurs when abnormal cells grow uncontrollably in the mouth and oral cavity, which includes the lips and tongue. Mouth cancers can invade local tissues and/or spread to other parts of the body (metastasize).
What causes mouth cancer?
The cause of mouth cancer, as with other cancers, is due to damage to cellular DNA. This results in uncontrolled growth of damaged cells, which leads to the formation of a cancer. The cancer can invade nearby tissues, or spread via the bloodstream or lymphatic …
How is mouth cancer diagnosed?
Mouth cancer is diagnosed with a biopsy of suspected lesion. A pathologist will view the biopsy under a microscope to determine if it is cancerous.
How is mouth cancer treated?
Mouth cancer can be treated with surgery to remove cancerous tissue; with chemotherapy; and/or with radiotherapy.
Can mouth cancer be prevented?
There is no way to completely prevent mouth cancer, but you can reduce your risk by not smoking, minimizing alcohol consumption, using protection during oral sex and by eating a healthy diet high in fruit and vegetables.
What are the complications of surgery for mouth cancer?
Complications of surgery for mouth cancer include speech problems, difficulty swallowing and facial disfigurement, depending on the extent of surgery required.
About this article
Author: Jonathan Meddings BMedLabSc (Hons)
First answered: 18 Sep 2014
Last reviewed: 19 May 2018
Rating: 5.0 out of 5
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Category: Lung cancer