Oral pathology is the branch of dentistry that deals with the diagnosis and treatment of diseases and conditions that affect the oral and maxillofacial region. An oral pathology procedure involves the examination and analysis of tissues and fluids in the mouth to diagnose and treat various oral diseases and conditions.
During an oral pathology procedure, the dentist or oral pathologist will perform a comprehensive examination of the mouth, including the lips, tongue, gums, cheeks, and other oral tissues. They may also use diagnostic tools such as X-rays, CT scans, and biopsies to help diagnose and evaluate the extent of the disease or condition.
Common oral pathology procedures include:
Biopsy: A biopsy is a procedure in which a small sample of tissue is removed from the mouth and sent to a laboratory for analysis. This can help diagnose oral cancers, precancerous lesions, and other types of oral diseases.
Cytology: Cytology involves the examination of cells in the mouth to detect changes that may indicate a precancerous or cancerous condition.
Imaging: Imaging techniques such as X-rays, CT scans, and MRIs may be used to evaluate the extent of a disease or condition in the oral and maxillofacial region.
Salivary gland testing: Salivary gland testing involves collecting and analyzing saliva to diagnose conditions such as Sjögren's syndrome, a chronic autoimmune disorder that affects the body's moisture-producing glands.
Microbial testing: Microbial testing involves the analysis of bacteria and other microorganisms in the mouth to diagnose and treat infections and other oral diseases.
Overall, oral pathology procedures are important for the early detection and treatment of oral diseases and conditions. If you have any concerns about changes in your mouth, such as sores, lumps, or discoloration, you should contact your dentist or oral pathologist for an evaluation.