Chairside Guide Outlines Oral Cancer Prevention Strategies

Dentistry Today
Photo courtesy of the Oral Cancer Foundation.


Photo courtesy of the Oral Cancer Foundation.

The FDI World Dental Federation has released Oral Cancer: Prevention and Patient Management. Launched in collaboration with Sunstar, the chairside guide aims to mitigate the effects of oral cancer by promoting comprehensive screenings as an integral part of routine dental checkups. It highlights the most common risk factors and underlines the importance of early diagnosis and treatment by providing practical solutions for the entire care pathway. 

“FDI recognizes that oral health professionals play an essential role in combatting oral cancer,” said Dr. Kathryn Kell, FDI president. “Oral cancer is among the 10 most common cancers worldwide, but oral health professionals can help diminish its effects through yearly detection and swift treatment action.”

The chairside guide provides concise yet comprehensive information about oral cancer prevention, risk factors, and management, FDI reports. It also helps professionals navigate the clinical examination and diagnosis through a decision tree. It focuses on the most common sites of oral cancer: the tongue, the insides of the cheeks, and the floor of the mouth. 

“This chairside guide is a great example of a tool that supports health professionals in their daily patient screenings. Dental checkups can be the perfect setting for early detection of several diseases, providing a central prevention role to dental professionals,” said Dr. Marzia Massignani, senior manager of scientific affairs at Sunstar.

Survival rates for oral cancer can be improved through early detection, FDI says, making it essential for dental professionals to conduct thorough oral screenings as part of their routine clinical assessments, even in younger populations considered at lower risk for oral cancer. The guide facilitates the integration of this examination into routine checkups. 

“About 500,000 new cases or oral and oropharyngeal cancers are diagnoses annually, three quarters of which occur in the developing world,” said Dr. Ihsane Ben Yahya, FDI council member. “By designing an informative tool to prevent, promptly detect, and treat oral cancer, we act in line with our mission to lead the world to optimal oral health.”

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