National Oral Cancer Awareness Survey Reveals Shocking Statistics

April 12, 2016

A recent national consumer survey released by Vigilant Biosciences revealed that among U.S. adults, the majority knows very little or nothing at all about oral cancer (58 percent) and only 37 percent reported being screened for oral cancer at their last dental check-up.

Vigilant Biosciences is a developer of solutions that aid in the early detection and intervention of cancer, in collaboration with the Head and Neck Cancer Alliance and Support for People with Oral and Head and Neck Cancer (SPOHNC).

The online survey polled 523 U.S. consumers ages 35-75 on their knowledge and preferences around oral cancer and oral cancer screening. The findings were released in support of Oral, Head and Neck Cancer Awareness Month, which occurs in April and Oral, Head and Neck Cancer Awareness Week, which occurs April 10–16, 2016.

The survey found that the majority of consumers (86 percent) want to learn more about how to reduce their risk for oral cancer and are interested in simple screening tools, used in the dental office or at home, that test for early indicators of oral cancer and provide information on increased or decreased chance of developing oral cancer.

“Oral, head and neck cancer—particularly HPV-related oral cancer—is increasing at an alarming rate and many people are not diagnosed until the cancer has progressed to a later stage,” said Holly Boykin, executive director at the Head and Neck Cancer Alliance. “Early diagnosis is significant to the successful treatment of these cancers, and by working together with other industry organizations, as well as private companies like Vigilant Biosciences, we can improve patients’ lives through early detection and a commitment to engage in conversations about risk factors.”

“The diagnosis of head and neck cancer can be overwhelming,” said Mary Ann Caputo, executive director of SPOHNC. “Patients diagnosed with this disease can find support, hope and encouragement through SPOHNC’s many resources and programs specifically designed for this patient population. Any steps to raise awareness of oral, head and neck cancer will help to increase the survival rate and quality of life from earlier intervention. National Oral, Head and Neck Cancer Awareness Month is a great time to begin this dialog.”

An executive summary of the survey and an infographic can be found at

“This year’s survey found that there is still much work to be done around increasing awareness of oral cancer and oral cancer risk,” said Matthew H.J. Kim, founder, chairman, and CEO of Vigilant Biosciences. “Hundreds of thousands continue to be diagnosed with late-stage oral cancer every year, but we can work together to impact those numbers by educating consumers on the risks and providing clinicians with simple, accurate and cost-effective tests that can help detect oral cancer before it is too late.”

Source: Dentaltown

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