ENT and Oral Pathology

Abnormalities of the ear, nose and throat (ENT) often require tissue biopsy for diagnosis and treatment planning. Pathology of the oral cavity can also be included in this category, which includes evaluation of dental cysts and lesions of the tongue and lining of the oral cavity. Cigarette smoking is a big risk factor for cancers involving the head and neck. However, there are other risk factors for cancers of this region including human papilloma virus (HPV) infection. ENT pathology not only includes diseases involving the mouth, nose and neck but also those that are associated with the salivary glands. A pathologist is knowledgeable in the diagnosis of ENT abnormalities and determining if certain cancers need to undergo further testing for prognostic or therapeutic planning reasons such as if the cancer needs to have HPV testing. If a cancer of the head and neck region is detected, there are specialized ENT surgeons that can assist the patient in determining if surgery, radiation, chemotherapy or a combination of these measures is the best choice. ENT surgeons perform complex surgeries that can be several hours in length and the surgery will often include the assistance of a pathologist in order to determine how extensive the surgery should be or if a tumor has been completely excised by evaluating the margins intraoperatively.

Hospital Pathologist | Lab Community Hospital | Grand Junction, CO