Why Would My Dentist Recommend an Oral Biopsy?
Have you received a recommendation from your dentist for an Oral Biopsy? If you’re feeling confused, worried or uncertain about what lies ahead and are looking for answers, you’ve come to the right place. In this blog post, we’ll guide you through the purpose of an oral biopsy, what it can detect, the process of oral surgery, and why choosing our Bristol practice can offer you peace of mind.
What Can An Oral Biopsy Detect?
When your dentist identifies a lesion or anomaly in your mouth, an oral biopsy is the most reliable way to determine whether it’s malignant or not. These biopsies play a crucial role in diagnosing oral diseases and safeguarding your oral health.
It is important to attend your routine dental check-ups as they allow dentists to detect abnormalities early, leading to timely diagnosis and prompt care.
Common types of mouth lesions include polyps, mucocoeles, lichen planus and epulii. If your dentist identifies any of these, they will recommend referring you to a specialist for a biopsy. During this procedure, a small sample of tissue will be extracted for analysis by a pathologist, who will check for signs of cancer or other health concerns. Biopsies can examine various types of tissues, including soft tissues like gums, lips, or the tongue, as well as hard tissues such as the jawbone.
When Would Your Dentist Recommend an Oral Biopsy?
Your dentist may recommend an oral biopsy if they detect a lesion or abnormality in your mouth. Additionally, they might suggest it if you show signs of the following symptoms:
- Bleeding lesions or sores
- Gum ulcers
- Discolouration or unusual swelling of the gums
- Mouth lumps
- Chronic sore throat
- Difficulty swallowing
What Can You Expect From Oral Surgery?
Oral surgery is a minimally-invasive procedure that typically takes only 15-20 minutes, so there’s no need to be anxious. Here’s what you need to know:
1) Consultation: You’ll have an initial consultation with your oral surgeon, often followed by the procedure on the same day. They will assess the lesion and determine the most suitable approach. Most biopsies are relatively small and straightforward.
2) Local Anaesthesia: After assessing the lesion and planning the procedure, your surgeon will administer a local anaesthetic to numb the area. Most biopsies are conducted under local anaesthesia, except for more extensive procedures that may require sedation for your comfort and safety. This will be discussed during the consultation, and if you require sedation, you’ll be asked to return another time for the procedure after a medical review. With sedation, it’s vital to bring a chaperone with you who can safely accompany you home.
3) Tissue Extraction: Once the local anaesthetic has taken effect, the surgeon will extract a portion of tissue necessary for the biopsy and then close the incision with self-dissolving stitches. The tissue sample will be sent to a local hospital pathology department for examination, testing and diagnosis. The pathologist will subsequently generate a report, which will be emailed to the practice and yourself.
4) Recovery: How you will feel after surgery largely depends on the location of the biopsy and the type of tissue sample taken. In many cases, you can resume your regular diet and activities once the effects of the local anaesthesia have worn off. However, if stitches were necessary, your oral surgeon may recommend refraining from directly brushing the treated area for approximately one week. Always follow your dentist’s aftercare instructions provided to you after the surgery.
Why Choose Us for Your Oral Biopsy?
If you require oral surgery in Bristol, why not choose us over a hospital?
Opting for private care can significantly reduce the lengthy waiting times you may encounter with a hospital – which can stretch for months or even longer – offering you a faster diagnosis and timely care for your peace of mind.
Our specialist team, comprising Dr Joel Thomas and Dr Bosun Hong, can accommodate you in a matter of weeks, with biopsy results typically returning within 1-2 weeks. This expedites your path to a safe and swift diagnosis.
Read our ‘Mouth Cancer Action Month’ blog post to learn about the critical significance of early oral cancer detection.
All our biopsies are performed under local anaesthesia in a relaxed and modern setting. However, conscious sedation is available for comfort and relief if you’re a nervous patient.
If your dentist has recommended an oral biopsy, it’s essential to understand the purpose and importance of this procedure. An oral biopsy is a valuable tool in diagnosing oral diseases and ensuring the overall health of your mouth. It can detect various abnormalities, including lesions, sores, ulcers and lumps, and is crucial in distinguishing between benign and malignant conditions.
Early detection of mouth cancer is vital, and routine dental check-ups are instrumental in this regard.
At The Bristol Dental Practice, we offer a quicker alternative to hospital care. We are committed to scheduling your visit within a few weeks, and you can expect to receive biopsy results within 1-2 weeks thereafter. We also prioritise your comfort and offer conscious sedation if needed, making your experience as stress-free as possible.
Choosing our practice for your oral biopsy can provide you with assurance and expedited access to diagnosis and treatment. Your health and well-being is our priority, and we are here to support you every step of the way.
To learn more about Oral Biopsies in Bristol, give us a call at 0117 910 5929. Book your consultation online.