Tongue Cancer

(Cancer, Tongue)

Definition

Tongue cancer is a subgroup of head and neck cancer. Cancer develops from the squamous cells of the tongue, forming a localized tumor. Cancer cells have the potential to grow and spread.Tongue cancer is often grouped with other mouth cancers, such as cancer of the lips, hard palate, cheek lining, the portion of the mouth underneath the front of the tongue, or gums. These cancers are collectively known as oral cancer.
Cancer of the Tongue
tongue cancer
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Causes

Cancer occurs when cells in the body divide without control or order. Eventually these uncontrolled cells form a growth or tumor. The term cancer refers to malignant growths. These growths can invade nearby tissues including the lymph nodes. Cancer that has invaded the lymph nodes can then spread to other parts of the body.It is not clear exactly what causes these problems in the cells, but is probably a combination of genetics and environment. Changes may occur as a result of:

Risk Factors

Tongue cancer is more common in men, and in people aged 40 years and older. Other factors that may increase your chance of tongue cancer include:
  • Poor oral and dental hygiene
  • Irritation of the mucous membranes in the mouth due to smoking and drinking
  • History of mouth ulcers
  • Family history

Symptoms

Tongue cancer may cause:
  • A lesion, lump, or ulcer on the tongue
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Mouth sores and mouth pain
  • Numbness or difficulty moving the tongue
  • Change in speech due to inability to move the tongue over the teeth when speaking
  • Pain when chewing and speaking
  • Bleeding from the tongue

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