Ali Lowe: Get ‘Lip Fit’ to Avoid Cancer

A few years ago, I had light bulb moment during a routine appointment. My patient had a sore on his lower lip and I suggested he had it checked by a doctor. He later confirmed that what I had spotted was lip cancer. That made me shiver!

Although dental school teaches us to look at the lips of patients, the inside of the mouth is what we are generally interested in and the lips are just what get in the way of our treatment. Most lip cancers begin in the thin, flat cells in the middle and outer layers of the skin called squamous cells, which is why they are called squamous call carcinomas. These cancers tend to spread quickly, so I felt lucky that my patient took my professional advice seriously.

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