The number of oral cancer cases is increasing on a daily basis, not only in the UK, but around the world. There are more than six thousand seven hundred new oral cancer cases reported each year and this results in more than two thousand deaths a year.
Scientists and researchers are always working on ways to combat cancer of all types, but broccoli could be the new super food which could reduce the risk of oral cancer in the future. It could also help prevent head and neck cancers.
Broccoli contains very high levels of sulforaphane. Trials which took place in China a few years ago revealed that sulforaphane mitigates environmental carcinogens. New research has now shown that it may be effective in preventing oral cancer.
Trials are due to start in the United States which will involve giving patients broccoli seed powder capsules to identify if it has an impact on the oral lining and if it can help prevent oral cancer in the future. The study has already been underway for some time which involved laboratory testing on mice, they used the capsules and identified that the broccoli seed powder was effective in reducing the number of tumours.
The study will involve ten healthy volunteers and forty volunteers who have been treated for neck and head cancer. Broccoli is expected to be a “green chemoprevention” which is expected to cost less money and fewer resources and hopefully will make a significant difference for oral cancer patients in the future.
It is imperative that everyone is made aware of oral cancer, which claims more lives each year than testicular and cervical cancer combined. There are a number of tell-tale symptoms you can watch out for to help you identify if you have any reason for concern.
I recommend all patients ensure they attend their routine dental appointments. In most instances it’s a dentist that will first see the patient and during a routine dental appointment we can identify if there are any problems that need urgent attention.
Red and white patches in the mouth and on the tongue, ulcers that don’t heal, pain and problems swallowing are all potential signs of oral cancer. Some patients may experience all the symptoms, some may experience one or two symptoms. If you think you have any of these symptoms, then get medical advice soonest as the sooner the cancer is caught the sooner your treatment can begin.