A biopsy is the removal of tissue for the purpose of a diagnostic examination to know the extent of an infection. A small piece of the tissue is removed from the abnormal area to confirm the diagnosis. Out of the patients undergoing examination, at least 10% of them have some abnormality of the oral mucosa.
If there is an unexplained oral mucosal abnormality that persists despite treatment, biopsy is required for further assessment of the malignancy. Oral lesions appearing red, red and white or maybe ulcerated or fixed to deeper tissues indicates malignancy. If lesions bleed easily or grow rapidly then this should alert the doctor of a malignancy. Abnormal pigmented lesions are also of concern. Biopsy is suggested if the pigmented lesions remain unchanged up to 5 years or a longer duration.
How it is done
For most cases, biopsies are conducted under local anesthesia. Biopsies usually leave a small hole which can be repaired by stitching. Mostly dissolvable stitches will be used which disappears after two weeks. The entire procedure may just take 15 minutes. Pain medication will be prescribed if necessary.