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Article: Volume 42 Number 7 Page 644 - September 2015

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  Dent Update 2015; 42: 644-654

Oral medicine:  Mouth Cancer for Clinicians Part 4: Risk Factors (Traditional: Alcohol, Betel and Others)

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Abstract: A MEDLINE search early in 2015 revealed more than 250,000 papers on head and neck cancer; over 100,000 on oral cancer; and over 60,000 on mouth cancer. Not all publications contain robust evidence. We endeavour to encapsulate the most important of the latest information and advances now employed in practice, in a form comprehensible to healthcare workers, patients and their carers. This series offers the primary care dental team, in particular, an overview of the aetiopathogenesis, prevention, diagnosis and multidisciplinary care of mouth cancer, the functional and psychosocial implications, and minimization of the impact on the quality of life of patient and family.

Clinical relevance: This article offers the dental team an overview of the main cancer risk factors, namely tobacco and alcohol, betel and other chewing habits, and environmental factors.

Author notes: Nicholas Kalavrezos, FRCS, FFD RCSI, MD, Maxillofacial and Reconstructive Surgeon of The Head, Face and Neck, University College London Hospital and The Harley Street Clinic. Assistant Secretary, European Association of Cranio-Maxillofacial Surgery and Professor Crispian Scully, CBE, FMedSci, DSc, FDS, MD, Co-Director, WHO Centre on Oral Health and General Health; Professor Emeritus, UCL, London; King James IV Professor, Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh, UK.

Objective: To provide the dental team with an overview of the main cancer risk factors.