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Oral Cancer Screening in Aurora, CO

Dr. Christopher Henes and his dental team are proud to offer a wide variety of services, including digital oral cancer screenings in Aurora, CO

One person every hour, every day dies of oral cancer in America. It has become the sixth leading cancer among men and is one of the few cancers in which the rate of detection is increasing among young adults. Most people are not aware of the potential risks; however, when detected early enough, the survival rate for oral cancer is very high. Because of these rates we at Iliff Family Dental want to help prevent oral cancer.  One of the ways that we do that is with the use of VELscope, which helps in the early detection of oral cancer.

Oral Cancer Screening

While some think that oral cancer is rare, The Oral Cancer Foundation proves otherwise. Each day, about 132 Americans are newly diagnosed with mouth cancer. Worldwide, the problem is far greater, with more than 640,000 new diagnoses every year.

The American Cancer Society estimates that oral cancer strikes tens of thousands of people each year, and only 56% of those diagnosed survive more than five years. Early detection is vital to surviving oral cancer.


At Iliff Family Dental, we want to be able to provide our patients with the latest technology. For every patient, we provide a complete visual oral cancer screening, but now with the introduction of VELscope, we can take that one step further.  The use of VELscope aids in the visualization of mucosal abnormalities during oral examinations. VELscope can spot bacterial infections and inflammation to cancer and pre-cancerous lesions. 

VELscope uses fluorescent technology that can help point out oral health concerns that may have otherwise been overlooked.

VELscope Blue Light image

The technology behind VELscope utilizes specific wavelengths of blue light combined with proprietary optical filtering to enhance the visualization of oral mucosal abnormalities. During a VELscope fluorescence screening, unhealthy tissue will typically have an abnormal appearance which stands out against surrounding healthy tissue, decreasing the likelihood that areas of concern will be missed.

Because VELscope aids in the diagnosis of pre-cancerous and cancerous lesions, we at Iliff Family Dental highly recommend that you receive a VELscope cancer screening once yearly.

What is the VELscope?

The VELscope is an advanced piece of dental technology and is the first adjunctive device cleared by the FDA and Health Canada to help clinicians detect cancerous and pre-cancerous lesions and other lesions that might not be apparent to the naked eye. The VELscope is also cleared to help surgeons determine appropriate surgical margins.

How does it work?

The VELscope’s blue light excites natural fluorophores in mucosal tissues. In turn, the fluorophores emit their own light — in shades of green, yellow and red. The VELscope’s proprietary filter makes fluorescence visualization possible, by blocking reflected blue light, and by enhancing the contrast between normal and abnormal tissue.

Is the VELscope safe?

Yes, the VELscope system is completely safe. The handpiece does not emit any radiation. The only thing being shone into the oral cavity is blue light, generated by light emitting diodes.

Does the VELscope generate “false positives” for oral cancer?

False positives occur when a diagnostic test mistakenly signals the presence of disease. The VELscope system is NOT a diagnostic test, and does not, consequently, generate false positives. As an adjunctive visualization tool, the VELscope helps dental professionals discover a wide range of unhealthy tissue in the mouth, including oral pre-cancer and cancer.

Schedule Your Appointment to discuss if you are a candidate for digital oral cancer screening with Dr. Christopher Henes in Aurora, CO Today!

If you are interested in learning more about digital oral cancer screening, call 303-695-0102 or book an appointment with our 5-star-rated dentist. We are conveniently located on Iliff near I-225. During your session, our experienced dentist and team will take the time to answer all your questions about our treatments, our office, our flexible payment options, and anything else you may want to know about us! Come to experience Iliff Family Dental and our unmatched patient experience! You will quickly see why people in Aurora, CO love us