During an oral cancer exam, your dentist will carefully examine the tongue, inside of your mouth, and your lips to look for spots or sores that are flat, painless, white, or red.
Many of these spots or sores are harmless, but some aren’t so you will likely need a test to determine if a problem exists. Your dentist may choose to perform a brush test, which involves scraping a miniature brush across the suspicious sore or discolored area in the patient’s mouth. The cells collected on the brush are sent to a lab for analysis. If the results show suspicious cells are present, a biopsy can then be performed.