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The VELscope System

A VELscope is a handheld scope that Varano Dental uses to detect abnormalities in the tissue of a patient’s mouth. This device is used to improve detection of cancer and pre-cancer abnormalities. We use VELscope for our oral examinations because it does not require any dyes or uncomfortable, drawn out tests. With VELscope, we can get you in and out of your dental hygiene exam in just two minutes. 

Not all diseases can be seen by the naked eye. The VELscope handheld device uses a harmless, bright blue light to inspect your mouth and tongue so that Dr Varano and  our hygiene staff can see suspicious spots in a way natural light would otherwise hide. This specific light is sensitive to unnatural tissue changes. These abnormalities show up in the mouth as fluoresce, allowing us to identify problem spots instantly through a change in a distinct, healthy pattern. 

Why Should You Get Screened for Oral Cancer?

 If we discover suspicious cells early on in a patient, the five year survival rate is eighty five percent positive, while the oral cancer is still localized and confined to one site. Only thirty three percent of all oral cancer patients have localized abnormalities due to late discovery. If the cancer is found while it is still regional (that is inside of the regional lymph nodes) these patients survival rate is only fifty five percent. Forty six percent of all oral cancer patients have regional cancer. Like all cancer, tumors found in a later stage are harder to treat and so the survival rate is dramatically smaller than those who had discovered the disease in an earlier stage. Only thirty two percent survive this disease when diagnosed in a later stage and only fourteen percent of oral cancer patients find their cancer late, thanks to consistent screening. Patients who had not been screened regularly are at a higher risk for finding it in a later stage which reduces their survival rate to fifty percent. 

Today, research shows that oral cancer can be found in individuals who have the Human Papilloma Virus, people who use tobacco or drink an excessive amount of alcohol. If you have a compromised immune system or a history of cancer, it is important that you get screened regularly to prevent and catch oral cancer before it grows. 

With consistent screenings at Varano Dental Excellence, Dr Varano and staff can ensure your health and catch abnormalities early.