Autoflurosence A Brimming Hope To Prevent Oral Cancer

Posted by Drsoundarya on Thu, Sep 2, 2021  
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Oral cancer is the 6th most common type of cancer detected in India. It is mainly caused due to smoking cigarettes and beedis.The smokeless forms of tobacco which are responsible for causing cancer are chewing paan, hans and gutka. Our government has banned certain tobacco products and is constantly cautioning the public against the consumption of tobacco products but many people are addicted it. Men are most commonly affected when compared to women. Continuous usage of tobacco irritates and injures the delicate lining of oral mucosa. During the routine dental examination, we come across a lot of white and red lesions in patients who smoke or chew tobacco. These  are nothing but initial steps for the formation of oral cancer. YES!! It is a bone chilling truth…!!

We dentist who super specialize in oral medicine and radiology can identify this demon trying to destroy you at the earliest and alert you.We perform an advanced chair side diagnostic procedure in our dental clinic with the help of velscope.Velscope works on the principle of tissue autofluroscence.

Now, what is autofluroscence?

 The cells of the oral mucosa contains inherent molecules called flurophores.Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NADH) and flavin adenine dinucleotide (FAD) are flurophores present in the epithelium (inside the cell).Collagen matrix and elastin are flurophores which are present outside the cell

When normal oral mucosa is illuminated by Velscope emitting UV light (200-400 nm) or visible light (400-600 nm) the flurophores are excited. They gradually decay to ground state by releasing photons of low frequency and longer wavelength than absorbed photons. In normal oral mucosa the metabolic rate is normal so the tissues exhibit normal pattern of autofluroscence and glow in green.

When an oral tissue injured by usage of tobacco is illuminated by Velscope, they absorb the light and emit fewer green lights or do not emit green light. This difference in autofluroscence pattern occurs as a result of altered metabolic rate among these cells which are about to turn into cancer.

Velscope is very easy to perform and does not require any technical expertise. It comes with a provision where the dentist can fix the camera and take pictures of the autofluroscence pattern of the oral precancerous lesion. The procedure also has increased patient compliance since it is painless and there is no bloodshed. This technology is considered to be a landmark in optical imaging in oncology. The equipment is portable and can be used even during mass oral cancer screening prgrammes.Apart from oral cancer they are also applied in various types of cancer like colon, stomach, lung cancers.

Oral cancer can be nipped in the bud with the help of velscope.However, stopping the usage of tobacco and tobacco related products by individual are mandatory. Tobacco cessation clinic should be set up in every dental office and de-addiction centers should be set up to help them quit the habit. A combined effort of the dental fraternity and the public can help in not only prevention but also eradication of the deadly disease.







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