Oral Submucosal Fibrosis – Beware of the Diagnosis

Majid Ali, M.D.

Unless Made by a Pathologist, This Is a Dangerous Diagnosis


What Is Oral Submucosal Fibrosis? 

The lining of the oral cavity is called mucosa, as is the case with all other parts of the alimentary tract, such as stomach and colon. Submucosa is the tissue underlying the mucosa. Fibrosis means excess fibrous (collagen and its cells) which develop in the healing from injury or inflammation.


Why Is Oral Submucosal Fibrosis a Dangerous Diagnosis?

Because it must be separated from cancer, which only a pathologist can do with a microscope. I have seen calamitous consequences when a doctor diagnosed it with microscopic examination of the tissue. The patients’ cancer went undetected until it spread all through the mouth and the mouth could not be opened, as well as spreading into the lungs.

Fibrosis anywhere in the body can also mask fibromatosis, a form of slow-growing malignancy.

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