The oral mucosa is the mucous membrane that lines the inside of your mouth. When healthy, it is usually smooth and coral pink in color. Changes in texture or color are sometimes indicative of disease and could be a warning sign for a pathological process, the most serious being oral cancer. If you notice any of the following changes, a clinical evaluation and diagnosis made by a biopsy may be necessary:
- Suspicious mass or ulcer
- Red or white patches
- A sore that doesn’t heal and/or bleeds easily
- Persistent hoarseness or sore throat
- Difficulty chewing or swallowing
These changes can usually be discovered on the lips, cheeks, palate, tongue, and gum tissue around the teeth. If a microscopic evaluation is needed, a biopsy will be taken and microscopically observed by a pathologist. The earlier the oral cancer is diagnosed, the better the chances for full recovery. Pain is not usually associated with oral cancer, but if you are experiencing facial and/or oral pain, please contact us so we can help determine the best course of treatment.