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 Oral cancer is one of the few types of cancer that haven’t experienced a significantly reduced mortality. One North American dies of oral cancer every hour of every day. Presently 30,000 patients are diagnosed annually with oral cancer. The 5-year survival rate is only 50 %, accounting for 8,000 deaths each year. Any sore which does not resolve within a two week period on its own, with or without treatment, should be considered suspect and worthy of further examination . Besides a routine visit to the dentist, it is the patients responsibility to be aware of changes in their oral environment.

The biggest growth of oral cancer is among young non smokers and oral cancer is linked to HPV which can be contracted during sexual intercourse or oral sex. When diagnosed in the early stages the survival rate is very high.

VElscopes fluorescence technology aids in the early visualization of muscosal diseases and enhances effective oral mucosal screening. The Velscope is a hand held device that offers dentist and other oral health care providers a screening instrument for early detection. The VElscope handpiece emits a safe blue light into the oral cavity, which excites the tissue beneath and at the surface and causes it to flouresce . By using special optical filters in the handpiece, the clinician is able to immediately view the different fluorescence responses of healthy vs. abnormal oral tissue. The healthy tissue will appear bright green while suspicious regions are identified by a loss of fluorescence, and will appear dark.

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