A biopsy may be necessary when changes of the skin, lips, or tissues of the mouth are noticed. These changes may include any of the following:


  • Changes in color
  • Ulceration
  • Swelling
  • Pain
  • Infection
  • Increase in size
  • Scabbing or crusting


Often, the earliest signs of disease, especially oral cancer, are changes in the color of the tissue. Not all soft tissue lesions will have symptoms.


Many of the lesions which occur in the jaw bones do not have symptoms until they become very large and destructive. Early detection is only possible through x-rays. A thorough yearly examination by your general dentist is an important part of maintaining your general health.

Head, Neck and Oral Cancer
Are You at Risk for Oral Cancer?