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Meetinghouse Dental Care
Mercury-Safe, Metal-Free, High-Tech Dentistry

VELscope

VELscope is fluorescent-light oral cancer detection technology.

 

Did you know that one American dies of oral cancer every hour?

 

Tobacco use and alcohol use remain high risk factors in oral cancer, but AGE - that is, exposure to environmental toxicity - and exposure to HPV virus are now recognized as additional PRIMARY factors.  In fact, 27% of today’s oral cancer victims do not smoke or drink. 


At highest risk:    

  • individuals 40 and older with lifestyle risk factors that include:
    • tobacco use (any type within 10 years)
    • alcohol consumption of one+ drinks per day
    • previous history of oral cancer
    • autoimmune deficiencies such as HIV and AIDS
    • viral infections, particularly human papilloma virus
    • diabetes

At high risk:                  

  • individuals 40 and older with no lifestyle risk factors
  • individuals younger than 40 with lifestyle risk factors

At increased risk:          

  • individuals 18 to 39

 

The American Cancer Society indicates that more women in the United States will be diagnosed with oral cancer this year (>12,000 cases) than cervical cancer (<10,000 cases).  Furthermore, there are now as many cases of oral cancer caused by the sexually transmitted disease of human papilloma virus (HPV) as HPV-related cases of cervical cancer.  The death rate in the United States for oral cancer is higher than that of cervical cancer, Hodgkin's disease, and cancer of the brain, liver, testes, kidney, or ovary, but oral cancer is 90% curable when found in early stages.


Traditional oral cancer screenings cannot detect earliest stages of cancer.  While worthwhile, they are only 40-70% effective at discovering the earliest signs, no matter how thorough or experienced the dentist, according to current research studies. 


A VELscope screening is an annual early detection procedure like the mammogram, Pap smear, Prostate Specific Antigen test, and colonoscopy.  An early detection screening is advisable for all sexually active guests and/or guests ages 21 and over once per year.  Early detection screening allows the dentist to identify suspicious areas of the mouth at the earliest possible stages during your routine cleaning and exam visit.  The procedure is painless and takes three minutes to perform using fluorescent light technology that penetrates skin to the basal layer. 

Early detection of pre-cancerous tissue can minimize or eliminate the potentially disfiguring effects of oral cancer. 

 

Early detection can save your life.

 

Click here to download the VELscope consent form to complete at home.