Oral Cancer Screening by VELscope®

Velscope Sapphire Oral Cancer ScreeningOral Cancer Screen

Southern Boulevard Dental Center has incorporated VELscope® powered by Sapphire® into its dental practice for routine oral cancer screening. Rio Rancho Dentist Dr. Martin Goebbel is an advanced dentistry expert.

According to the American Cancer Society, in 2009, an estimated 35,720 new cases of oral cavity and oropharyngeal cancer will be diagnosed in the United States, causing approximately 7,600 deaths. It is one of the few types of cancer that has not seen a significant reduction in incidence over the past 30 years, and recent research has shown a strong association with human papillomavirus (HPV), which can be sexually transmitted. For this reason, it is recommended that all individuals over the age of 18, or anyone who is sexually active, should have at least an annual comprehensive oral examination, and ideally at every dental hygiene visit.

Oral cancer is typically discovered in late stages, when the five-year survival rate is only 22%.
If detected in early stages, however, the five-year survival rate is 80% or higher. VELscope® powered by Sapphire® can also help discover abnormal growths before they become cancerous, even below the surface. The process is completely free of any pain or discomfort and is affordably priced.

Evaluate your risk by completing the “Oral Health Risk Factors” form.

Print and complete the “Oral Screening Consent Form” and bring it to your appointment.

Call 505-892-8600 or click here to set up your appointment.

Normal, green fluorescence pattern

Lesion that didn’t look suspicious that turned out to be cancer

Irregular, dark area - confirmed through biopsy to be CIS

Our practice continually looks for advances to ensure that we are providing the optimum level of oral health care to our patients. We are concerned about oral cancer and look for it in every patient.

One American dies every hour from oral cancer! Late detection of oral cancer is the primary cause that both the incidence and the mortality rates of oral cancer continue to increase. As with most cancers, age is the primary risk factor for oral cancer. Tobacco and alcohol use are other major predisposing risk factors but more than 25% of oral cancer victims have no such lifestyle risk factors! Studies also suggest that human papillomavirus (HPV 16/18) plays a roll in more than 20% of oral cancer causes.

Oral cancer risk by patient profile is as follows:

Increased Risk: patients ages 18-39: sexually active patients (HPV 16/18)
High Risk: patients age 40 and older; tobacco users (ages 18-39, any type within 10 years)
Highest Risk: patients age 40 and older with lifestyle risk factors (tobacco and/or alcohol use); previous history of oral cancer

We have incorporated Velscope, blue light fluorescent visualization, into our oral screening standard of care. We find that using Velscope along with a standard oral cancer examination improves the ability to identify suspicious areas at their earliest stages. Velscope is similar to proven early detection procedures for other cancers such as mammography, Pap smear, and PSA. Velscope is a simple and painless examination that gives the best chance of finding any abnormalities at the earliest possible stage. Early detection of pre-cancerous tissue can minimize or eliminate the potentially disfiguring effects of oral cancer and possibly save your life.

HPV related Oral, Head and Neck Cancer

Human Papillomavirus (HPV)

  • Causes as many cancer of the upper throat as tobacco and alcohol
  • Primary cause of cancers of the tonsils, lower tongue and upper throat
  • Cancers of oral region has doubled since 1974
  • Will surpass those caused by alcohol and tobacco within the next 10 years
  • Possible transmission sources: person to person contact, multiple sex partners, saliva, unwashed hands, kissing

HPV 16, 18 causes 95% of cervical cancers
HPV 16 found in 90% of HPV related oral cancers

HPV oropharyngeal Cancer

Schedule your Oral cancer screeing today. Call 505-892-8600