New research shows that attending a dental appointment before cancer surgery could be the difference between life and death.
It sounds shocking, but that’s because it is. A simple dental check up before undergoing major cancer surgery could prevent death, or other post-operative illnesses. It might not be at the top of your to-do list before a major surgery, and we can understand that. Nobody likes visiting the dentist at the best of times. However, new research from Japan suggests that a routine check up could make for a healthier recovery.
Cancer surgery = A reduction in complications.
Patients undergoing major cancer surgery might reduce their risk of complications by seeing a dentist beforehand. Dentists are trained to spot problems with teeth and gums, but can also spot the signs of other illnesses, too.
The research found that patients who take the time to visit a dentist prior to their surgery are less likely to develop post-surgery pneumonia, or pass-away within 30 days of surgery. Why? Because post-operative pneumonia can be contracted by aspiration of oral and pharyngeal secretions. This is according to the study’s Lead researcher, Miho Ishimaru, of the University of Tokyo. Respiratory germs can grow on the surface of the teeth and tongue. Dental care has been found to help reduce pneumonia for patients on ventilators, the researchers found.
Some cancers already have mandatory pre-operative exams.
Some types of cancers – usually head and neck cancers- have mandatory pre-operative dental check ups. This research was conducted on patients who had cancers of the head, neck, oesophagus, stomach, lung, liver, colon, or the rectum, most of which do not have mandatory pre-operative dental check ups.
Finding a dentist for a pre-operative exam.
Are you, or is someone you know under-going cancer treatment? Finding a dentist can be the least of your worries. But we can take the hassle out of it for you. A 15-minute check up could be the difference between a speedy recovery and a complicated one.
Here at Defacto Dentists, we can help you find a brilliant dentist in just a few clicks. All it takes is a simple location search on www.defactodentists.com. Browse through the practices in your area, read reviews from other patients and see what treatments are on offer.