Oral cancer

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If oral cancer spreads

Cancer cells can spread from the mouth to other parts of the body. This spread is called metastasis.

Understanding how a type of cancer usually grows and spreads helps your healthcare team plan your treatment and future care. Oral cancer can spread differently depending on where in the mouth it starts. If oral cancer spreads, it can spread to the following:

  • other parts of the mouth
  • muscle surrounding the mouth
  • lymph nodes in the neck (called cervical lymph nodes)
  • bone surrounding the mouth (the upper or lower jawbone)
  • skin on the face
  • salivary glands
  • liver
  • lung
  • distant bone, such as the base of the skull or the spine
  • brain

Stories

Dr Roger Zemp Improving cancer detection with ultrasound and tiny droplets

Taking action against all cancers

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The latest Canadian Cancer Statistics report found that of all newly diagnosed cancers in 2017, half are expected to be lung, colorectal, breast and prostate cancers. Learn what you can do to reduce the burden of cancer.

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