Although cancer in this stage has not become invasive and started to grow deeper into the soft tissues. If it is left untreated it can start too.
The treatment is usually to remove the top layers of the tissue. Follow up appointments must be made to see if the occurrence returns again. If the cancer returns again after the removal of the early stage, radiation therapy may be required.
Nearly all patients at this stage survive a long time without needed intensive treatment.
Stages 1 and 2
At this stage the Oral Cancers need to be treated with either surgery or radiation therapy. Chemotherapy can also be given with radiation therapy. Especially to treat any cancer left after surgey.
The choice is influenced by the side effects and how it may effect your ability to swallow, speak and your appearance. Large or deep cancers often require surgery. If needed, special reconstructive surgery can help correct the defect in the lip. If the tumor is thick, this increases the risk that the cancer may have spread to lymph nodes in the neck, so the surgeon may remove them to be checked for cancer spread.
By stages 3 the cancers have spread to the nearby tissues and most likely to the lymph nodes in the neck. They are usually treated with a combination of surgery and radiation/chemotherapy. Surgery is completed first which removes the lymph nodes.
When cancers reach this stage, there is a high chance they could have spread to other parts of the body. The treatment involved is surgery and chemotherapy.
Once a cancer has reached a stage 4, the 5 year expectancy is less that 10%.