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The oral cavity includes the following:
The retromolar trigone (the small area behind the wisdom teeth).Anatomy of the oral cavity. The oral cavity includes the lips, hard palate (the bony front portion of the roof of the mouth), soft palate (the muscular back portion of the roof of the mouth), retromolar trigone (the area behind the wisdom teeth), front two-thirds of the tongue, gingiva (gums), buccal mucosa (the inner lining of the lips and cheeks), and floor of the mouth under the tongue.
Most lip and oral cavity cancers start in squamous cells, the thin, flat cells that line the lips and oral cavity. These are called squamous cell carcinomas. Cancer cells may spread into deeper tissue as the cancer grows. Squamous cell carcinoma usually develops in areas of leukoplakia (white patches of cells that do not rub off).
Lip and oral cavity cancer is a type of head and neck cancer.
Anything that increases your risk of getting a disease is called a risk factor. Having a risk factor does not mean that you will get cancer; not having risk factors doesn't mean that you will not get cancer. People who think they may be at risk should discuss this with their doctor. Risk factors for lip and oral cavity cancer include the following:
These and other symptoms may be caused by lip and oral cavity cancer. Other conditions may cause the same symptoms. A doctor should be consulted if any of the following problems occur:
Lip and oral cavity cancer may not have any symptoms and is sometimes found during a regular dental exam.
The following tests and procedures may be used:
Prognosis (chance of recovery) depends on the following:
For patients who smoke, the chance of recovery is better if they stop smoking before beginning radiation therapy.
Treatment options depend on the following:
Patients who have had lip and oral cavity cancer have an increased risk of developing a second cancer in the head or neck. Frequent and careful follow-up is important.
For more information on Lip and Oral Cavity Cancer click here
This link is to the National Cancer Institute (NCI) cancer website in the United States. There may be references to drugs and clinical trials that are not available here in Australia.
For information courtesy of Cancer Australia, click here
Page last updated: 30/04/2020