Oral cancer: the role of the dentist in early diagnosis and control


  • Anderson Rocha-Buelvas Universidad del Valle




Mouth neoplasia, Early diagnosis, Secondary prevention, Oral diagnosis, Prevention and control


This paper emphasizes the importance of early detection of oral cancer as a prevention and control tool. It begins documenting the epidemiology and relevance in public health of this type of cancer by means of scientific evidence which demonstrates that, compared to other types of cancer, it is not statistically significant. Oral cancer is more aggressive and lethal than other tumors. Besides, it has multiple etiologic factors, high metastasis potential, cumulative effect with time and, it compromises esthetics and function of the patients. Subsequently, it ratifies that oral cancer must be prevented and controlled by means of instruction on risk factors, early detection and sufficient clinical and epidemiological update. The last part of the paper analyzes the importance of early diagnosis of oral cancer especially considering the persistent lack of teaching in education and prevention in most dental schools; dentists usually diagnose oral cancer in the late stages. Finally, the unsatisfactory primary and secondary prevention of oral cancer is questioned.

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Author Biography

Anderson Rocha-Buelvas, Universidad del Valle

Odontólogo, Universidad Nacional de Colombia. Docente Investigador, Facultad de Odontología de la Universidad Cooperativa de Colombia -Seccional Pasto. Coordinador del Grupo de Investigación de Epidemiología del Cáncer de Vías Aéreodigestivas Superiores (GIECVADS) de la Universidad Cooperativa de Colombia Pasto articulado a la Red Interorganizacional del Observatorio Nacional por la Salud Bucal y la Práctica Odontológica (ONSB) de la Universidad de Antioquia. Miembro de la Internacional Association of Dental Research (IADR). Miembro de la Asociación Latinoamericana de Medicina Social (ALAMES). Correo Electrónico: rochabuelvas@gmail.com



How to Cite

Rocha-Buelvas, A. (2009). Oral cancer: the role of the dentist in early diagnosis and control. Revista Facultad De Odontología Universidad De Antioquia, 21(1), 112–121. https://doi.org/10.17533/udea.rfo.2237

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