Oral Pathology/Cancer Exams in Houston, TX

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If you have noticed a change in your gums, inside cheeks, tongue, or other parts of your mouth, our periodontist at Patrick V. Nicosia, D.D.S., M.S., Inc. has received special training in diseases of the mouth. Dr. Nicosia can identify potential diseases of the mouth and other oral conditions, including cysts, tumors, and lesions, that may need medical attention. As a leader in oral health and technology, our dental expert believes in early detection screening and recommends these exams for all adults. If you would like to learn more about our oral screenings and what is included in your annual dental exam, call and schedule your appointment with our practice in Houston, TX today.

Typically provided as part of routine dental visits, oral pathology/cancer exams are important for our Houston, TX patients due to the ability to recognize any oral conditions or cancer early on. At Patrick V. Nicosia, D.D.S., M.S., Inc, further benefits of oral cancer exams include:

  • Early detection of precancerous lesions or cancer of the mouth
  • Ability to find the presence of mouth and throat cancers
  • Screening is comfortable and should not involve pain
  • Fast and efficient treatment that takes about five minutes
  • Sooner diagnosis of oral problems allows for higher cure rates
  • May allow patients to avoid more expensive and invasive treatments later on

At Patrick V. Nicosia D.D.S., M.S., Inc., we are committed to early detection and treatment of oral cancer through our comprehensive oral pathology/cancer exams. You may wonder if you are a candidate for these important screenings. The simple answer is: everyone is a candidate. Oral cancer does not discriminate and can affect anyone, regardless of age or lifestyle. However, certain factors can increase your risk, making regular screenings particularly important. These factors include:

  • Age
  • Tobacco Use
  • Heavy Alcohol Use
  • HPV Infection
  • Diet
  • Previous Oral Cancer Diagnosis

Even if you don't fit into these categories, regular screenings are still a proactive and potentially life-saving step toward maintaining your oral and overall health. You can turn to our Houston, TX dental practice for oral pathology/cancer exams.

Dr. Nicosia will scan the teeth and gums to perform a visual examination. He also may use his fingers inside to feel the surface of the skin to feel for any bumps or abnormal soft tissue textures. If any areas are of concern, Dr. Nicosia may schedule a biopsy for evaluation by an oral pathologist. Other conditions that Dr. Nicosia will test for during your oral pathology exam include periodontal disease, mouth ulcers, and jaw misalignment, to name a few.

Some symptoms of concern include the following:

  • Hoarseness when speaking
  • Difficulty chewing or swallowing
  • Lingering soreness in your throat
  • Change in the color of any portion of your oral cavity
  • Red, inflamed, or bleeding gums
  • Any oral growth (such as a cyst or lesion)

Even if someone has never smoked or quit smoking years ago, it is possible to develop oral cancer.

Dr Nicosia was my dentist over 20 years ago before I moved to another city. He is the best and very knowledgeable in his field. I still have my teeth so that is definitely due to his expertise in gum surgery and teeth care. My husband recently started having dental issues and needed to get expert care so of course we made the trip to Houston to see the expert. We are both extremely happy with the dental experience Dr Nicosia and his staff provide for our family.

D.G. Yelp

Dr. Nicosia and Cindy are simply the best at what they do. They care deeply about the patient's well being. I have been treated for dental care with Dr. Nicosia and Cindy over a decade now and wouldn't go anywhere else.

A.B. Google

Knowledgeable, great surgeon,Painless, the best.

Anonymous Healthgrades

Being a patient of Dr. Patrick Nicosia for the past 30 plus years has been a real pleasure. Dr. Nicosia and his staff make you feel welcome and relaxed when attending appointments. There is never an ounce of anxiety when sitting in the dentist chair. Over the past 30 years, even with changes, Dr. Nicosia and his staff have continued to exceed my expectations, they have always been kind and courteous, going above and beyond to make sure I was comfortable. Thank you Dr. Nicosia and your entire staff for making my visits to your office some of my best experiences.

P.M. Google

I and two other family members have used Dr. Nicosia over the past 10 years for dental implants. He’s absolutely the best! He is passionate about his work, uses the latest technology and is honest, kind and professional. His staff is equally excellent. I wouldn’t go to anyone else and I always recommend him to anyone needing dental work.

D.B. Google


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If Dr. Nicosia identifies a concern during your exam, he may numb the area before taking a small sample (called a biopsy). This piece will be sent to an oral pathologist for further investigation. Any discomfort you might experience after the biopsy can be managed with over-the-counter medications. Once your results are ready, we'll schedule a follow-up appointment to discuss the findings and develop a treatment plan, if needed.

We use the latest in oral health technology to diagnose patients to give more treatment options for better oral health. We hope you will consider Patrick V. Nicosia D.D.S., M.S., Inc. a trusted, comprehensive dental practice where you can get the services and screenings needed for optimal health. Call and schedule your appointment in Houston, TX today.

About Us
What causes oral cancer?

Oral cancer is usually linked to the use of tobacco, human papillomavirus (HPV) infection, sun exposure, age, and alcohol use. It generally has an impact on people over 40 years old and is more commonplace for males than females.

Why is early detection of oral cancer essential?

Early identification of oral cancer is vital to securing better treatment results and minimizing the likelihood of the cancer progressing. With early detection during a routine dental exam, you can diminish your chances of disfigurement or death and increase your chances of survival. This is why if you have any suspicious ulcers, bulges, or white spots on the lips or in your mouth, you should arrange for a dental examination at Patrick V. Nicosia D.D.S., M.S., Inc.

Can a dentist treat oral cancer?

Dr. Nicosia can spot unusual patches and get tissue samples to be issued to a laboratory for review. Oftentimes, dentists work with an oral surgeon and oncologist to establish the most beneficial intervention plan if oral cancer is identified. Treatments may involve surgical removal, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy, according to the depth and stage of the cancer.

*Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary from person to person. Images may contain models.