Oral Cancer

Regular medical and dental exams are necessary to detect oral cancer at an early stage. oral cancer; It includes cancers that occur in the mouth, most commonly on the lower lip, behind the tonsils or salivary glands. Common areas; mouth and base of tongue. Almost all; It comes from stratified squamous cells as well as the mucous membrane lining the mouth, tongue, and lips. Cancers are the specialty of ear, nose, throat and head and neck surgeons. Oral cancer is 2 times more common in men than in women. Oral cancer is classified according to the type of cell in which the cancer (carcinoma) begins to grow. Squamous cell carcinoma is the most common type of oral cancer, occurring in 9 out of 10 cases. Less common types of oral cancer include:

Oral cancer is the growth of abnormal cells anywhere in the mouth or lips. Although catching oral cancer as early as possible is very important for the success of the treatment, surgery is at the forefront in the treatment of tumors in the region. The operation should be performed with a wide, safe, surgical margin as much as possible, and the surgical area removed during the operation should be supported by pathology (frozen). In some cases, chemotherapy may be used in addition to surgery. Neck dissection (excluding the hard palate) is essential in the treatment of oral cancer.

What Are the Types of Oral Cancer?

Oral cancer is classified by the type of cell in which the cancer (carcinoma) begins to grow. Squamous cell carcinoma is the most common type of oral cancer, occurring in nine out of ten cases. Less common types of oral cancer include:

  • Bone adenocarcinoma, which is cancer that develops in the salivary glands
  • Sarcoma that develops from abnormalities in cartilage, muscle, or other tissues
  • Malignant melanoma of the mouth, where cancer begins in cells that produce skin pigment or color (melanocytes)
  • They look like very dark, blotchy bumps that bleed frequently.
  • Lymphoma, which usually develops from cells in the lymph nodes. (They can also grow in the mouth.)

Oral cancer is a type of cancer that falls under the category of "head and neck cancer". Other types of head and neck cancer include:

  • throat cancer
  • Nasopharyngeal cancer (the area behind the nose that forms the tip of the larynx)
  • Oropharyngeal cancer
  • Hypopharyngeal cancer
  • thyroid cancer
  • Nasal and sinus tumors
  • Esophageal cancer
  • Avoiding carcinogenic substances such as cigarettes and alcohol,
  • To undergo regular medical and dental examinations,
  • To have teeth and dentures that can cause injury when they are in the mouth, treated by a specialist physician.

Oral Cancer Risk Factors

There is no clear scientific explanation for the occurrence of oral cancer in some people with similar lifestyles and the absence of others. But the common problem is that it is not contagious. So a person cannot get cancer from another person! However, studies show that some factors are effective in the formation of cancer.


It is one of the main causes of almost all oral cancers. The risk is very high for long-term and heavy users of tobacco and tobacco products. This type of drinker, who also has a habit of alcohol, increases the risk of oral cancer. 90% of oral cancer cases occur in smokers.


It is known that smokers are exposed more often than non-smokers. The risk increases with the amount of alcohol consumed. Sun rays: As in all skin cancers, it also plays an important role in lip cancer. This is especially important for smokers.

Having a family history of cancer

Cancer, poor diet, poor living conditions and health problems in the family increase the risk. The risk is increased in people who have previously been treated for head and neck cancer and continue to smoke.

The risk of oral cancer is quite high in chronic injuries caused by broken dentures with sharp edges or teeth in the mouth, and especially in people who continue to smoke.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it contagious?

It is not contagious. You can't catch this disease from anyone like you can with the flu. If you pay attention to your oral and dental care and stay away from bad habits, your risk of getting sick is very low.

Who is in the oral cancer risk group?

People who consume large amounts of alcohol and smoke are already in the risk group for all types of cancer. In addition, if you have habits such as chewing your cheeks, biting your lips, if you have sores in your mouth and these do not go away for a long time, if you see discoloration and bleeding, you are at risk.

What can I do in early detection?

oral cancer; It is a type of cancer that occurs on the lips (usually the lower lip), inside the mouth, behind the larynx, tonsils or salivary glands. It is more common in men than women. If not diagnosed early, oral cancer may require surgery, radiation therapy, or chemotherapy. Although the overall survival rate for five years is 50 percent, it can also be fatal. The reason for this poor prediction is that the early symptoms are not noticed. Therefore, early diagnosis of oral cancer is very important for successful treatment.