Context: No study highlighting the incidence of oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) in young adults has been reported from North Kerala until now.
Aims: To study the cases of OSCC reported at our institution, with emphasis on the clinicopathologic variables in young adults.
Settings and design: This was a retrospective study of OSCC cases reported from 2002 to 2007.
Materials and methods: Data of oral cancer cases reported between 2002 and 2007 were retrieved from the records. The cases in patients below 40 years of age formed a separate study group. The data obtained was tabulated and comparisons drawn on the observed variables between the two groups.
Results: Results showed a high incidence of OSCC among young adults. The demographic and anatomic location of these cases showed significant variations from cases of oral cancer in older patients. In addition, a significant number of these cases failed to show any relation with the commonly implicated etiologic agents of oral cancer.
Conclusion: The findings of our study indicate a high incidence of oral cancer among young adults in our region. The tongue is the most common site in these cases with a significant number showing no possible etiological factors.