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Actinic keratosis and oral cancer
 

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Published: 10 years ago
 

Actinic keratosis and oral cancer


The vast majority of people with cheilitis do not have cancer and will never get get lip cancer.

However, cancer can be a cause of cheilitis. The term "actinic cheilitis" describes a cancer of the lip.

I ran across some definitions tonight that I'd like folks to be aware of, especially those of us who have not yet been able to see a doctor about our lips.

I'm not out to scare anyone, but if you have a long-term lip disease/condition that is not going away after you've tried all the normal treatments, you'll want to rule out the possibility that it's cancerous.

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A. What are the symptoms of actinic keratosis?

POSTED BY Cleveland Clinic

An actinic keratosis (plural "keratoses") may appear as a scaly, raised, or rough area of skin. The keratosis can be pink, red, or brown; sometimes it is the same color as normal skin, but feels rough or dry to the touch.

Actinic keratoses are more likely to develop on parts of the body that get the most exposure to the sun, such as the face, ears, neck, hands, and forearms.

Peeling or cracking lips, especially the lower lip, might also be a sign of actinic keratosis.

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B. What are the signs and symptoms of oral cancer?

POSTED BY Cleveland Clinic

The following are the common signs and symptoms:

Swellings or thickenings, lumps or bumps, rough spots, crusts, or eroded areas on the lips,
gums, or other areas inside the mouth

The development of velvety white, red, or speckled (white and red) patches in the mouth

Unexplained bleeding in the mouth

Unexplained numbness, loss of feeling, or pain/tenderness in any area of the face, mouth, or neck

Persistent sores on the face, neck, or mouth that bleed easily and do not heal within two weeks

A soreness or feeling that something is caught in the back of the throat

Difficulty chewing or swallowing, speaking, or moving the jaw or tongue

Hoarseness, chronic sore throat, or changes in the voice

Ear pain

A change in the way your teeth or dentures fit together – a change in your "bite"

Dramatic weight loss

If you notice any of these changes, contact your dentist immediately for a professional examination.
 

 
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