Dr. Cheng & Dr. Patel Promoting Awareness at the Oregon Dental Conference
By the Portland oral surgeons at Head & Neck Surgical Associates
Dr. Cheng: I’m Alan Cheng, I’m one of the head and neck surgeons of Legacy Cancer Center. I’m here with my partner, Dr. Ashish Patel we’re at the Oregon Dental conference 2019 promoting April which is, Head and Neck Cancer Awareness Month.
Dr. Patel: So, as you know head and neck cancer is six most common cancer worldwide and really important for dentists because most of head and neck cancer is diagnosed in early stages by their dental providers.
Dr. Cheng: One of the most common sites to develop it into cancer is actually in the oral pharynx which is the back of the throat. Interestingly, these days the majority of all pharyngeal cancers are caused by or related to by high-risk Human Papilloma Virus or HPV.
Dr. Patel: Interestingly enough HPV or Human Papilloma Virus is the same virus that causes cervical cancer in women and through modern medicine and vaccinations, cervical cancer has largely been reduced to a very small number in the United States because of excellent primary care and preventive care. We hope to do the same thing with Human Papilloma Virus related head and neck cancer or pharynx cancer. The CDC actually recommends all boys and girls of appropriate age between 9 and 26 to be immunized with the Human Papilloma Virus vaccine to prevent the formation of Human Papilloma Virus related or pharynx cancer much later in life.
Dr. Cheng: So, the two best things that you can do to protect yourself from loved ones with head and neck cancer is to go to regular dental appointments and have a head and neck screening at your dental appointments. Also get your younger loved ones vaccines with the HPV vaccine.