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Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery

, Volume 15, Issue 1, pp 1–9 | Cite as

Areca nut in pathogenesis of oral submucous fibrosis: revisited

  • Punnya V. AngadiEmail author
  • Sanjay S. Rao
Review Article

Abstract

Background

Oral submucous fibrosis is a disease due to a chronic, insidious change in fibro-elasticity, characterized by burning sensation in the oral cavity, blanching, and stiffening of the oral mucosa and oropharynx leading to trismus and inability to open the mouth. The symptoms and signs depend on the progression of the lesions and number of affected sites. It is predominantly seen in Indians and other Asians. Once the disease has developed, there is neither regression nor any effective treatment. It is considered as a pre-malignant stage of oral cancer, and the reported risk of malignant transformation varies from 2.3–7.6%.

Conclusions

The common etiological factor considered for this unremitting disease is use of areca nut; however, the precise mechanism still remains elusive and controversial. A wide range of treatment consisting of drugs, surgical therapy, and physiotherapy have been attempted till date, with varying degrees of benefit, but none of them have proved to be a cure for this disease. This field remains open for clinical trials and research. This paper aims to give an overview on the role of areca nut in the pathogenesis and malignant potential of oral submucous fibrosis.

Keywords

Oral submucous fibrosis Areca nut Pathogenesis Collagen synthesis Collagen degradation Malignant potential 

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© Springer-Verlag 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology and MicrobiologyKLEVK Institute of Dental Sciences and HospitalBelgaumIndia
  2. 2.Department of Oral and Maxillofacial SurgeryKLEVK Institute of Dental Sciences and HospitalBelgaumIndia

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