How is a biopsy for mouth cancer performed?

Your dentist may first start with a brush test to diagnose and biopsy a possible case of mouth cancer. The dentist will brush the suspicious mouth sore to gather cells, which are sent to a diagnostic laboratory to be analyzed under a microscope. If the brush test is positive for cancer cells your dentist may then perform an incisional biopsy to confirm the results. With an incisional biopsy, the doctor will remove part or all of the suspicious lesion. If the lab finds the cells to be precancerous, the mouth lesion will be removed using surgery.

A mouth cancer biopsy is performed by first removing a sample of tissue from the suspicious area. Local anesthesia is often used for this short procedure. After the sample is collected, it is examined for cancer by a pathologist. The pathologist will be able to determine whether the cells are cancerous.

Continue Learning about Oral Cancer

Oral Cancer

Oral Cancer

Oral cancer can grow anywhere in the oral cavity, which includes our lips, tongue, gums and even the floor and roof of our mouths. There are several types of oral cancer, including squamous cell carcinoma and malignant melanoma. I...

f detected early, oral cancer can be cured by surgically removing cancerous growths or tumors or using radiation therapy. Dentists are your first line of defense in early detection, since they are likely the first to spot a precancerous or cancerous lesion. Men are more likely to develop oral cancer, making it the sixth most common cancer among men. Smoking and drinking alcohol in excess can increase your risk. Learn more about preventing and treating oral cancer with expert advice from Sharecare.

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.