What is Oral Pathology?
Oral Pathology, often referred to as Maxillofacial Pathology, deals with the detection, type and management of disease in the mouth. If you visit an Oral Pathologist, he will carry out an investigation into the causes and effects as well as the processes of these types of disease.
You may need to visit an Oral Pathologist if your dentist suspects that you may have indications of:
- Tumors or cysts in the jaw
- Salivary Gland tumors
- Ulcers in the mouth that will not heal
- BRONJ – Bisphosphonate Related Osteonecrosis of the Jaw
- Red or white lesions in the mouth ( Leukoplakia and Erythroplakia)
- Skin cancer
What are the benefits of having Oral Pathology treatment?
When you are treated by an Oral Pathologist, he will evaluate what is going on in your mouth and put together a plan of treatment. This will prevent your condition from worsening and treat the underlying cause. In order to do this, he will carry out a full oral examination, taking biopsies if required. Depending upon the problem, he may remove the full lesion or just a part of it. The specialist laboratory will then evaluate the specimen and produce a diagnosis. Your consultant will then discuss the findings with you and put together a detailed and extensive treatment plan to rid you of the problem or disease.
Who should consider Oral Pathology treatment?
If you have any indication of Oral and Maxillofacial Disease being present in your mouth, then your dentist may consider referring you to see a specialist Oral Pathologist. If you have ulcers or lesions in the mouth, any lumps, cysts or tumors or your gums do not look healthy, these could all be signs of the early development of pathological processes. Things like oral cancer need to be investigated early on so that treatment is not delayed.
Your dentist may consider putting you forward for treatment if you have any of the following:
- Patches in the mouth that are red or white
- Sores in the mouth that bleed and do not heal
- Lumps in the gums or inside the mouth
- A constant sore throat
- Problems with swallowing or eating