• 7/15/2006
  • Sao Paolo, Brazil
  • L. Cuffari et al.
  • Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol Oral Radiol Endod, July 1, 2006; 102(1): 56-61

OBJECTIVE:
To identify pain as the initial symptom of oral cancer patients. STUDY DESIGN: Hospital charts of 1412 patients (1977 to 1998) with oral cancer were reviewed (238 female and 1174 male).

Results:
Pain was the initial complaint in 19.2% of the sample. Oral cancer (ratio 4:1) and initial pain (ratio 9:1; P= .001) was prevalent in men. There were 12 different complaints of pain: sore throat (37.6%), tongue pain (14.0%), mouth pain (12.9%); pain when swallowing (11.1%), dental pain (5.9%); earache (5.9%); pain in the palate (4.1%); burning mouth (3.3%); gingival pain (2.2%); pain when chewing (1.1%); neck pain (1.1%), and facial pain (0.7%). Pain was associated with advanced TNM staging and location of tumor in the tongue (P= .004) and the tongue/mouth floor (P< .006).

Conclusion:
There were 12 different descriptions of pain; pain was related to TNM staging in the tongue and the tongue/mouth floor. The data presented reinforce the suggestion that patients with orofacial pain need systematized evaluation and sometimes require an interdisciplinary approach.

Authors:
L Cuffari, JT Tesseroli de Siqueira, K Nemr, and A Rapaport

Authors’ affilation:
Oral Surgery, Dental School of Universidade Bandeirante (UNIBAN), São Paulo, Brazil

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