Signs and Symptoms of Oral Cavity and Oropharyngeal Cancer
Possible signs and symptoms of these cancers can include:
- A sore in the mouth that does not heal (most common symptom)
- Pain in the mouth that doesn’t go away (also very common)
- A lump or thickening in the cheek
- A white or red patch on the gums, tongue, tonsil, or lining of the mouth
- A sore throat or a feeling that something is caught in the throat that doesn’t go away
- Trouble chewing or swallowing
- Trouble moving the jaw or tongue
- Numbness of the tongue or other area of the mouth
- Swelling of the jaw that causes dentures to fit poorly or become uncomfortable
- Loosening of the teeth or pain around the teeth or jaw
- Voice changes
- A lump or mass in the neck
- Weight loss
- Constant bad breath
Many of these signs and symptoms can also be caused by things other than cancer, or even by other cancers. Still, it is very important to see a doctor or dentist if any of these conditions lasts more than 2 weeks so that the cause can be found and treated, if needed.
Last Medical Review: July 16, 2014 Last Revised: August 8, 2016
- Can Oral Cavity and Oropharyngeal Cancers Be Found Early?
- Signs and Symptoms of Oral Cavity and Oropharyngeal Cancer
- How Are Oral Cavity and Oropharyngeal Cancers Diagnosed?
- How Are Oral Cavity and Oropharyngeal Cancers Staged?
- Survival Rates for Oral Cavity and Oropharyngeal Cancer by Stage
- What Should You Ask Your Doctor About Oral Cavity and Oropharyngeal Cancers?