Re: Early detection helps fight oral cancer, The Record, Aug. 3. First off I would like to thank The Record for this well-written article on the importance of early detection. However, I fear that I might have been misinterpreted over the phone, therefore I hope I can make some clarification. I appreciate the opportunity to do so here.
1. The velscope is not a diagnostic tool but rather a screening tool. If the loss of fluorescence is seen it merely suggests an area that's different from the rest. It is not to confirm or suggest "cancer."
2. At Uptown Family Dental we perform a white light soft-and hard-tissue examination prior to screening. I don't use the velscope on literally "every single patient," but a high percentage of patients do have the velscope examination as an adjunct.
3. I also might have been misunderstood when I was quoted saying, "It was a surprise to learn that they don't do this type of test everywhere." My intention was: "As a whole, we are making strides in early detection and that I hope it's made more accessible to the public in the future."
Dr. Hedy Lam, New Westminster