Oral Cancer Diagnosis Breakthrough: Simple Saliva Test
Oral cancer is currently on the number six position on the list of deadly cancers. It is creating ravages worldwide, and even so people still do not give the proper amount of importance to awareness and regular screenings.
In order to try and make the situation with oral cancer a little better, Barry Wenig, a surgeon from the Michigan State University has teamed up with a dental benefits firm from Lansing, in order to run a clinical trial. They want to create an extremely cost effective and efficient saliva test, which will help detecting and diagnosing oral caner in early stages.
This could be a real breakthrough in the field of medicine, because oral cancer testing will become more facile and hopefully, a greater number of people will be saved from the claws of the dangerous condition. In the clinical trial, there will be involved as many as 120 patients who have got lesions or suspicious growths in their mouths or on their tonsils.
The doctor and his team of researchers will start looking for certain biomarkers, which are known to be indicators of oral cancer. The biomarkers are particular substances in the human organism, which are clear indicators of a biological condition.
The staff wants to create a saliva test which can easily identify these biomarkers in the system of the patient. With the help of this test, the dentists and the doctors will know immediately which are those patients that need to undergo a biopsy, and which are those whose life is not directly threatened by oral cancer complications.
According to Wenig, the greatest majority of the white lesions present in the mouth (cheeks, tongue, tonsils) are actually benign in nature. Up until now, too many patients have been subjected to biopsies that they do not actually need. With such a simple saliva test, the doctors are able to spot only those patients that struggle with malignant lesions and redirect them towards proper treatment.
Oral cancer is a disease, which has a very low survival rate. Wenig has pointed out that only 60% of the diagnosed patients live more than 5 years after the first diagnosis. Also, the survival rate of oral cancer among black males, is only at a dangerously low 38%.
Therefore, it is of utmost importance to come up with a diagnosis method that will allow doctors to diagnose patients in extremely early stages of the disease, when proper treatment can be a life savior. Currently, early neck or head cancer screenings are not available, so the saliva test will be indeed a breakthrough.
Categories: Dental News, Dentists
Topics: Tags: biological condition, biomarkers, biopsies, biopsy, black males, breakthrough in the field of medicine, cancer, cancer screenings, cancer test, caner