Getting diagnosed with mouth and oropharyngeal cancer

You usually start by seeing your GP if you have symptoms that could be due to mouth or oropharyngeal cancer. They will ask you about your symptoms, your general health and may also examine you.

They will then decide whether to do tests or refer you to a specialist.

Seeing your GP when you have symptoms of mouth or oropharyngeal cancer

There are some things you can do to get the most out of your GP appointment if you have symptoms of mouth and oropharyngeal cancer.

Pictures of mouth cancer

These photos give you an idea of what possible mouth cancers can look like, but remember that they might appear differently to this.

Referral to a specialist for mouth and oropharyngeal cancer

Your GP should arrange for you to have a test or to see a specialist if you have symptoms that could be due to mouth or oropharyngeal cancer. 

Screening for mouth and oropharyngeal cancer

 There is no national screening programme for mouth and oropharyngeal cancer. Read more about this.

Tests for mouth and oropharyngeal cancer

Your doctor will ask about your symptoms and they might examine you. Most people will have a biopsy to diagnose mouth or oropharyngeal cancer.

 

Last reviewed: 
27 May 2021
Next review due: 
27 May 2024
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