Lip Cancer Early Signs
Cancer » Lip Cancer » Lip Cancer Early Signs
Lip cancer comes under the category of oral cancer. The main causes of this type of cancer are sun, alcohol, tobacco, the human papilloma virus (HPV) and age (over 50 years). This is the cancer which mostly affects the male gender, but it is not that it is not found in women. Almost 25000 lip cancer cases are registered annually in the United States of America and this accounts for almost 15% of cancer.
Initially, there may be no signs of lip cancer. The most common symptom is a sore on the lips. This sore stays on the lips for a long duration and does not heal, gets deeper with time. Most lip cancers are found on the lower lip and are termed as squamous cell cancers. These are cancers which are formed due to abnormal multiplication of the cells and are flat disc shaped.
If the lip cancer is diagnosed at an early stage, the prognosis for this cancer is very good. This cancer can be easily cured with the help of radiation therapy or with the lip cancer surgical operation. It is not that the later stages cannot be treated; it just gets difficult to cure the lip cancer completely. In many cases, the combination of chemotherapy and radiation therapy is also given as treatment.
Lip cancer early signs are as follows
- Red or white patches on the lips:
Most of the times, it is observed that there are red or white patches or a combination of both seen on the lips or the area around the lips. This is the earliest symptom of lip cancer. This indicates the presence of abnormal cells in the lips and indicates that the cancer has reached a stage beyond 0. If this is not treated soon, this will develop into serious issues later.
- Sore on the lips:
Sore is a development on the lips which can occur at anytime but heals within a day or two. But when someone has developed it because of the cancerous cells, this will take a lot of time to heal. This is also one of the most common indications of something abnormal.
- Difficulty while swallowing:
This difficulty comes into play while doing everything. This will arise while chewing food, sipping a drink or even while the tongue would touch the lips. In severe cases, it is observed that speaking or any sort of jaw movement also has a lot of difficulty.
- Bleeding from the lips:
This too is a very common symptom and a lip cancer early sign. In most of the cases, it is observed that cracks develop on the lips and blood seeps out from them. This happens once a day minimum. In severe cases, a lot of blood is observed and can be controlled only by seeking medical help.
- Swelling is observed in the jaw:
This is a case in severe lip cancer. This occurs when the cancer has spread in the areas of the mouth and is in stage 3 or 4A. This also causes the teeth alignment to change and creates a lot of problems in the diction.
- Burning sensation
A burning sensation is observed when the cancerous cells are developed into the mouth. This is a sign where in the sensation will stay for some time and disappear. This should not be avoided as it is a sign that something is wrong with the lips. In many cases, it is accompanied by a light pain.
- Discoloration of the lips
Like the way red and white patches are seen on the lips, it is also observed that a portion which is infected by the abnormal growth turns into a different color, in many of the cases pale yellow or white. This is a sign that the cancer has developed and will spread soon if left untreated.
- Numbness in the lips:
Numbness in the lip is observed because the nodes around the lips become inactive. It is observed that one cannot feel anything while touching the lips. This is the case when there are abnormal cells into the oral cavity. In many cases, it is observed that this is the 1st symptom of lip cancer.
Lip cancer early signs are very few and it is very difficult to observe them. It is rare that the lip cancer has been diagnosed in an early stage. This is the cancer which does not spread very fast in initial stages, but after a certain time it multiplies at a very fast pace. This is a cancer which majorly involves just the lip initially, but it can also involve many of the other oral organs and then the treatment of lip cancer would get tougher.