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Old 02-08-2006, 09:05 PM   #1
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Question Oral Cancer??

Ok, just the thought of cancer is enough to make me nervous since my grandmother and dad both had it. However, my dad just finished chemo and is currently back to normal. But I think it's got me worried that it could run in the family and now I'm having the 'symptoms' of oral cancer. But the symptoms seem to vary from site to site. Anyway, I'm having sore, red gums that are VERY painful when brushing; bleeding gums(when I brush usually); my teeth seem a little loose and it feels like maybe they've moved a bit, but that could be my mind making me think that; I have a white coating on the back of my tongue with red, raised spots in that white area; my throat has been a little sore but I've had a small cold and that went away; my ears kinda hurt off and on randomly; and the BIG concern for me is the lymph nodes on the right side of my neck.. Which there are at least two swollen and the doctor told me he felt like they were nothing serious. But my dad had testicular cancer that spread to a lymph node behind his kidney. So I really don't wanna take any chances with them.

I've been to my family doctor twice-- the first time was to get an HIV test(big scare) since lymph nodes, white tongue, and cold symptoms were all symptoms of HIV but that test came back negative. Also had a CBC(?) I think, to check my blood, not sure what that checks but hopefully that would indicate lymphoma/Hodgkins. But that came back normal.. So when I came back to the doctor, he said he wasn't very concerned about it and he would refer me to an ENT(ear, nose, throat doctor) where they would decide whether to do a biopsy or maybe try 'watchful waiting'. Meanwhile I had been to the dentist once already for sore gums that appeared to be receeding. He gave me an oral rinse for things like gingivitis/perio and told me to use it for 2 weeks and if it didn't help to come back. ---Sorry if this is hard to follow, all the doctors are frustrating--- So NOW I have to go see the ENT who looks in my mouth, ears, nose and feels the swollen nodes. He tells me everything seems normal but understood I was concerned because of family history and set me up for a CT scan of my neck. I've had the scan and have the results here and I'm supposed to take them back to the ENT Friday where he will read them and I guess decide what should be done.--- Back to dentist since my mouth had worsened(tongue, gums receeded more, pain worse and in a different location now). Explained to him my concern of swollen nodes and other symptoms of oral cancer. So once again, despite how much pain I'm having, he tells me everything looks normal. And tells me there aren't any symptoms of pain for oral cancer and there would probably be growth somewhere. Then he goes on to tell me that usually older men that either smoke, use smokeless tobacco, drink, and/or have poor dental hygiene get oral cancer. And I'm 15 so he tells me something about being 99.99% sure I don't have it. It can happen to anyone though, regardless of what percentages show so that doesn't assure me. He told me he could refer me to a gum surgeon. I'm really stressed about all these different doctors and my parents don't seem to be taking it to seriously, or at least they aren't as concerned. But I'm so nervous... Now I guess I'll just have to wait and see the ENT for my results and ask HIM about my gums and throat since my dentist doesn't seem to see the problem. Why can't they just test for it and get it over with rather than saying I THINK you don't have it? It's very annoying.

So anyway my question is... What exactly ARE the symptoms if the dentist claims none and the internet claims some of which I have? Or is there anything else that could have some of the same symptoms I'm having? I'm kinda freakin myself out over this whole issue and just wanna know what's wrong so if it's serious they can treat it.

God bless! ..And sorry for the long story.

Last edited by jms1508; 02-08-2006 at 09:50 PM.

 
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Old 02-09-2006, 08:09 AM   #2
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Re: Oral Cancer??

Hi there, sorry your having such a rough time. First off you had your HIV test and its negative also there aren't specific symptoms for HIV....that is why the test is required. Oral cancer is normally a growth with no pain and your only 15, you reallly shouldn't worry at all about this.

It does sound like gum disease like gingivitis this is when you brush and the gums bleed or they are inflamed.

As for your cold and lymphnodes, anytime you have a virus your lymphnodes will get swollen or hurt, I have had a cold for 2weeks now and my right node on my neck isn't swollen but it hurts badly also so does my right ear on and off. Now for me its probably a combination of the cold and my teeth (I have to have them all out for dentures), and I'm sure my node hurts due to the cold and probably a tooth infection.

Even though cancer runs in your family you shouldn't be concerned about until your much much older. Go visit your dentist, and he should be able to take care of your problem

 
Old 02-09-2006, 08:53 AM   #3
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Re: Oral Cancer??

I went to him twice and he didn't see anything abnormal.. He also said he didn't see any lesions, not sure what that would be but I guess that's a good sign.
It just bothers me that he tells me nothing is wrong when my gums hurt so bad.

But something I noticed was when going to sleep one night, my left gums at the back felt really rough and hurt. The pain was gone when I woke up and then the right side was hurting, gradually getting worse while the left kept feeling better and smoother. Not sure if that makes any sense, but it does make me feel it's not cancer since it wouldn't heal itself or just switch gums overnight. Anyway, thanks for your post. It's good to have some reassurance when all I can do is go from doctor to doctor and wait on test results. Oh and pray.

God Bless

Oh yeah, is there anything I could do about the white coating on the back of my tongue?

Last edited by jms1508; 02-09-2006 at 08:54 AM.

 
Old 02-09-2006, 07:18 PM   #4
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Re: Oral Cancer??

Hi again,

Most everyone has a white coating, especially at the back of the tongue. You can try brushing your tongue with a toothbrush or a tongue scraper.

 
Old 02-10-2006, 10:06 PM   #5
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Re: Oral Cancer??

Just wanted to let you know I saw the ENT today. Told me him and the radiologist thoroughly looked over my scan results and saw nothing to be worried about. The lymph nodes were basically normal but so close to my skin I was just able to feel them. I also found out he is a Christian and he told me he didn't feel led to do a needle biopsy when he feels nothing is wrong. It would just be added pain for no reason. Being a Christian myself, it helped a lot to know he was too. But he said he wanted to see me again in 6 weeks to make sure nothing grew. After reading up on gingivitis I really think this is my problem. I also saw that it can cause swelling in the neck. But for some reason my dentist claims nothing is wrong. Is there anything I can buy like an oral rinse that treats gingivitis? Or do I need to see a dentist for diagnoses/treatment? If so I'm considering a new one...

Thanks again! God bless.

 
Old 02-14-2006, 02:15 PM   #6
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Re: Oral Cancer??

He's going to call in a prescription and wants me to get a cleaning next month.

 
Old 02-15-2006, 12:47 PM   #7
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Re: Oral Cancer??

I'm glad they are going to call something in for you. I need dentures and my teeth are horrible, I'm pretty sure I have gingivitis but no doctor ever told me this for fact but considering I'm getting dentures in a few weeks I couldn't possibly see how I couldnt!!!

Also if you grind your teeth at night it will make your gums hurt all day too.

 
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