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Have swollen lump at the back of tooth. Had biopsy, lump is bigger with red centre. Advise?

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I have a swollen lump on the left of my hard palate just above and to the side of my back last tooth. over 5 wks been there now. had a biopsy over a wk ago and still waiting, no result till next Wednesday. That back tooth has a large temp filling and the root is dead and they thinking maybe from that. Since the biopsy the lump seems to have grown back, a thickening with a very small now (has decreased in size) red kinda ulcer appearance in the centre. When I first got the lump it was huge and very very sore with a sore throat but did go down after couple wks to no bigger than a third of the size and with antibiotics, just won't go completely. Is it possible what I have is swelling from the punch biopsy or that the infection is still there and won't go until tooth is removed? or what I am worried about most is cancer. There is no pain there anymore but is tender in spots when I touch with my tongue . very worried as I have a looong wait :(
Thank you
Posted Thu, 27 Jun 2013 in General Health
Answered by Dr. Jorge Brenes-Salazar 25 minutes later

thanks for your health concerns. unfortunately, we will still need to be patient for the biopsy results as cancer is a microscopic diagnosis. Now, that being said, you are young, do not drink and most importantly dont smoke, all three the major risk factors for cancer of head and neck. the fact that there is a clear nearby focus of dental infection makes the possibility of an infectious process somewhat more likely, even more since it has regressed with antibiotics. Patience, good local cares. One day at a time, each day brings its own worry.

Hope that helps, please keep me posted about findings

Dr Brenes-Salazar MD
Mayo Clinic MN
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Have swollen lump at the back of tooth. Had biopsy, lump is bigger with red centre. Advise? 32 minutes later
Thank you for that, i just get very scared because my mum passed away from lung cancer at 53, also a life time non smoker. gives me little faith unfortunately in statistics.
Is it possible after a punch biopsy that the area can also swell? and do you know if hard palate tumors usually find hard tissue upon biopsy? the surgeon said the tissue he removed was very soft.
Thanks again..
Answered by Dr. Jorge Brenes-Salazar 9 hours later
Thanks for the follow up. For sure, there can be pain and swelling after a punch biopsy, particularly in the oral mucosa which is very vascularized. Palate tumors can vary in their consistency, but most of them tend to be softer in consistency.

In the meantime, try to keep yourself busy, exercise often, to try not to be anxious about the biopsy results until Wednesday.

Best regards
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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