Oral Biopsies in St. John, IN

Oral cancer is rare, but its effects can be severe if they’re not caught in time. However, it’s not the only condition that can cause abnormalities in your oral tissue. Fortunately, your oral surgeon can help you remain proactive about your oral health, and perform a biopsy of any abnormal tissue in your mouth. Biopsies can help determine the best treatment plan for you, and in some cases, save your life.

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Why should I get a biopsy?

Biopsies are usually recommended if your dentist has noticed a lesion or another irregularity in your mouth during an oral cancer screening. Oral cancer is rare, but often goes undetected unless your dentist notices its early signs. Biopsies allow your doctor to check the lesion for cancer. No matter the result of your biopsy, you’ll be able to take the right steps to protect your health both now and in the future.

Did you know…

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Tobacco use is one of the highest risk factors for oral cancer, with smokers having a 10x higher risk of oral cancer compared to nonsmokers.

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Board-Certified Oral Surgeon

Although a biopsy is a minor surgical procedure, it always helps to have peace of mind knowing that your health is in good hands. A certification from the Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons is a prestigious honor that requires true dedication to oral health and patient care.

Laser Biopsies

Biopsies are more comfortable and efficient than ever with our CO2 soft-tissue laser. The laser's precision allows for minimal tissue damage, which leads to faster healing times and less post-operative discomfort. It also reduces the need for sutures and minimizes bleeding and inflammation. With laser treatment, you will be treated with the utmost comfort and precision.

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Everyone deserves the peace of mind that comes with knowing you have a healthy smile. We work hard to keep exceptional care easy and affordable for every budget and lifestyle.

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The Benefits of Biopsies

Fast And Convenient

Getting a biopsy takes just a couple of minutes, and it’s a straightforward procedure. You’ll get your results within 1-2 weeks, once the lab has tested the biopsy sample and the pathologist has determined the results. Lesions can be non-cancerous (benign), pre-cancerous, or cancerous.

Get Peace Of Mind

Only about 1% to 6% of lesions in the mouth turn out to be cancerous. But getting a biopsy means you’ll have peace of mind. You’ll know whether or not the tumor could indicate oral cancer, and you’ll be able to get the appropriate treatment if necessary.

Catch Cancer Early

Regular oral exams and biopsies can help catch cancer early if it is present. In its early stages, oral cancer has a very high survival rate with proper care. However, if it’s not noticed in time, it could spread to the rest of your body, and treatment will be much more difficult.

Biopsies: What To Expect

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Oral Cancer Screening

Most dentists perform oral cancer screenings on every patient during their routine six-month appointments. Some patients find abnormal lumps and bumps that they cannot explain. Your doctor will look for lesions, abnormal patches of skin, and other signs of cancerous cells, and take note of anything that doesn’t look right.

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Biopsy Surgery

The oral surgeon will determine the best type of biopsy to identify and diagnose the growth. Most biopsies are small. Some biopsies are done on soft tissue such as the lip or tongue, and others are done on hard tissue such as the jaw bone. Many biopsies can be performed under local anesthesia (numbing) however deeper biopsies may require sedation. The sample will be preserved and sent to the pathologist for a diagnosis.

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Testing And Results

It usually takes a few weeks for your tissue to be processed. Once your results are in, you’ll discuss them with your oral surgeon either in person or over the phone. Most biopsies are negative for cancer, but if your result is positive, our team will refer you to an oncologist for further testing and the appropriate treatment. Some non-cancerous lesions still require less invasive treatments or monitoring.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Yes. There are several different types of biopsies, and your doctor will recommend the one that is most appropriate for your case. Here are some examples of different techniques for taking a biopsy:

Incisional biopsy: A small part of the abnormal tissue is removed to be analyzed.

Excisional biopsy: The whole lesion is removed to be analyzed.

Soft tissue biopsy: Biopsy of the tongue, lips, gums or other soft tissue. This type of lesion is first noted visually during a clinical exam.

Hard tissue biopsy: Biopsy of a lesion within bone. This type of lesion is often first detected on an x-ray.  

Biopsies are generally minimally invasive, low-risk procedures that require little-to-no healing time. However, in rare cases, patients can develop an infection at the treatment site, or experience bleeding that doesn’t stop. If you experience any excessive bleeding, soreness or pain that lasts for several days, swelling, fever, or chills, call your oral surgeon right away, as these can all be signs of a serious infection.

The results from a biopsy can tell your doctor a great deal about your oral health. They can tell if the abnormal tissue is cancerous, a benign lesion, or some type of infection, which informs the type of treatment plan you will receive.

Depending on the type of biopsy to receive, your recovery experience will vary. In some cases, you’ll be able to resume your normal diet and activities once the numbing agent wears off. In other cases, if you required stitches, for example, your doctor may recommend that you avoid brushing directly on the treatment site for about a week. In any case, most biopsies are minimally invasive, and don’t require an extended recovery period.

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St. John Oral Surgery and Dental Implants serves our neighbors in St. John, Crown Point, Lowell, Hebron, Demotte, Merrillville, Schererville, Dyer, Munster, Highland, Griffith, Beecher, Cedar Lake, Valparaiso, Winfield, Monee, Crete, Lansing, Steger, Rensselaer and Chesterton