VELscope: It Could Save Your Life
Did you know that oral cancer steals the life of one American every hour? We don't hear much about oral cancer, but 34,000 patients were diagnosed in 2007. Only half of patients diagnosed with oral cancer will survive longer than five years. Because it is often detected in the later stages, oral cancer's mortality rate is higher than that of cervical cancer, Hodgkin’s disease, brain, liver, kidney, or ovarian cancer. Treatment for oral cancer often causes disfiguration and lessens the patient’s quality of life.
Thanks to an amazing new technology, VELscope, Dr. Wagner and his team can quickly and painlessly screen for oral cancer. VELscope is a fluorescence-based identification system that detects tissue abnormalities and is used in combination with traditional visual exams.
All adults should have an annual VELscope exam because a quarter of oral cancer victims are non-smokers, don't drink, and have no lifestyle factors to heighten their oral cancer risk. Men over 40 and women between the ages of 20 and 40 are the most prone to the disease. Patients with lifestyle risks, including any tobacco use, daily alcohol consumption, viral infections, autoimmune deficiencies like HIV, and diabetes may need more frequent evaluations.
The screening involves use of a special light to illuminate abnormal cells so that they appear distinctly different from the surrounding normal tissue.
While the statistics on oral cancer are discouraging, when the disease is found and treated in the early stages it has an 80 to 90-percent cure rate. Dr. Wagner uses the VELScope on all new patient exams, and our standard of care is to have one VELScope screening per year on a cleaning visit. Early detection literally saves lives!
Discover the Difference
Call our Jacksonville Beach dental office today and reserve your appointment with general and cosmetic dentist Dr. Scott Wagner. Located in Jacksonville Beach, patients visit our office from across the nation, as well as the surrounding areas of Atlantic Beach, Neptune Beach, St. Augustine, and Ponte Vedra.