Oral Cavity Biopsies: 3 Do’s and 3 Don’ts

My first biopsy was misread as hyperkeratosis when in fact it was moderate dysplasia. I should have been flagged two years before I was diagnosed with Stage IV Squamous Cell Carcinoma on the lateral border of my tongue. Here is what I learned about biopsies: They are not 100% definitive. Why? Imprecise tissue sampling; Improper tissue handling; inaccurate interpretation. I …

4

“Dear Eva” – A letter from Yolanda

Hi Eva, I write to you because I’m desperate. I’m a 31 years old mother of two, and my oral cancer is back for the third time. Well, this time around there is no treatment since I have been radiated before. Everyone on the tumor board agrees no treatment should be given, however my radiation oncologist tells me we can …

Accelerated Tongue Growth Disorder

Have you ever heard of Beckwiths Wiedemann Syndrome? The most common part of the body to have accelerated growth is the tongue! Olivia Gillies was born withh Beckwiths Wiedemann Syndrome(BWS). Doctors spotted the unusually large size of her tongue while she was still in the womb. This was the fourth child born to a 27 year old mother from England. …

Pulling 265 Teeth in Four Days

I met Dr. Drew Smith, an oral surgeon, at Yankee Dental Congress in January.  After hearing me speak, he shared very thoughtful sentiments about how my story impacted him.  I was touched.  It takes a special person, especially if it’s a male, to feel the need to express emotions and articulate them well.  After several emails back and forth confirming …