The inside of the mouth is normally lined with a special type of skin (mucosa) that is smooth and coral pink in color. Any alteration in this appearance could be a warning sign for a pathological process. The most serious of these is oral cancer. The following can be signs at the beginning of a pathologic process or cancerous growth:
These changes can be detected on the lips, cheeks, palate, and gum tissue around the teeth, tongue, face and/or neck. Pain does not always occur with pathology, and curiously, is not often associated with oral cancer. However, any patient with facial and/or oral pain without an obvious cause or reason may also be at risk for oral cancer.
The VELscope system helps us visualize abnormalities in the mucosal tissues of your lips, mouth and upper throat. In just two minutes, with no rinses, stains or discomfort, a VELscope examination lets us improve our assessment of your overall oral health.
How Does the VELscope Work?
The VELscope's blue light "excites" molecules (called "fluorophores") deep within the layers of oral mucosal tissues. In turn, those fluorophores emit their own light (fluorescence), in shades of green, yellow and red. The VELscope's proprietary filter makes fluorescence visualization possible, by blocking reflected blue light, and by enhancing the contrast between normal and abnormal tissue.
We would recommend performing an oral cancer self-examination monthly and remember that your mouth is one of your body's most important warning systems. Do not ignore suspicious lumps or sores. Please contact us so we may help.