When you come in for an evaluation, we will perform a thorough oral cancer screening. We look at the entire anatomy of the mouth, including the lips, tongue and uvula. If we discover an abnormality, we will perform a biopsy.
A biopsy involves the removal of some or all of the abnormal tissue, which we send to a pathology lab for an examination. If it's troublesome, we will recommend follow-up care. Typically, biopsies will identify oral cancer as well as non-cancerous mouth sores.
Biopsies are usually performed under local anesthesia, with a numbing injection. We remove the tissue, then repair it with stitches. In most cases, the stitches will dissolve in about two weeks. The entire process, from start to finish, takes about 15 minutes. There's no special preparation for a biopsy.
After the numbness wears off, the area may be sore for a few days, which can usually be relieved with over-the-counter medication. Since the stitches are dissolvable, a review appointment is not always necessary, but we will call to discuss biopsy results.
For more information or if you'd like to schedule an appointment, please give us a call at 509-940-0025.