The prevalence of oral leukoplakia in 138 patients with oral squamous cell carcinoma

Oral Dis. 2004 Nov;10(6):346-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1601-0825.2004.01031.x.


Objectives: To determine the relationship between oral leukoplakia (OL) and oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC), and to evaluate possible differences between those carcinomas with and without associated leukoplakia.

Material and methods: A total of 138 patients were studied at the Stomatology Service of the University General Hospital, Valencia, Spain. These patients were divided into two groups: group 1, patients with oral cancer and leukoplakia, and group 2, patients with OSCC but with no associated premalignant lesions. The relationship between this precancerous lesion and the OSCC was evaluated, as well as the possible clinical and histological differences between the tumours of the two groups.

Results: Leukoplakia was detected in 27 (19.56%) patients with OSCC. No differences were found between the two groups regarding age and tumour location. However, statistically significant differences were observed with respect to the form, tumour stage and the presence of adenopathies in the cancers with and without leukoplakia; in that the tumours associated with leukoplakia were diagnosed as being at a more initial stage.

Conclusions: Those patients with OL associated with oral cancer presented with tumours at a less advanced stage than those where no associated leukoplakia existed.

MeSH terms

  • Carcinoma, Squamous Cell / complications*
  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Leukoplakia, Oral / complications*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Mouth Neoplasms / complications*
  • Prevalence