Why should you be screened?


When oral cancer is identified in the earliest stages, the 5-year survival rate is nearly 82%. Unfortunately, the survival rate of oral cancer has not improved greatly over the last 30 years due to late stage detection. Early detection is the key to survival.

An annual screening exam helps identify and qualify abnormalities that can lead to cancer. Simply put, an Oral Cancer Screening exam may turn your annual visit into a life-saving experience.

Oral cancer affects nearly 35,000 Americans every year. The keys to surviving oral cancer are early detection and early treatment. This starts with a regular oral cancer screening – at least once every six months. An oral cancer screening takes just minutes, is pain-free and can be performed during regular dental exams. If you are male, a regular oral cancer screening is especially critical: Oral cancer is more than twice as common in men as it is in women. Other people at high risk of oral cancer include people over the age of 60, tobacco smokers and heavy drinkers.

Dr.Gonzalez recommends all patients receive an annual, potentially life-saving screening exam for oral abnormalities even if no known risk factors exist. Typical oral cancer risk factors may include tobacco use and alcohol consumption; however, recent studies show that the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV 16/18) may play a role in more than 25% of oral cancer cases.

HPV is a common, sexually transmitted virus that has a casual link to oral cancer in an increasingly younger patient population. Few people are aware they have acquired the infection. Don’t be part of these statistics. Stack your odds by having an Oral Cancer Screening exam today.