WHO Collaborating Centre for Oral Cancer-Expert Symposium on Oral Potentially Malignant Disorders

On 4 and 5 March 2020, the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow hosted an Expert Symposium on Oral Potentially Malignant Disorders (OPMDs) organised by the World Health Organization (WHO) Collaborating Centre for Oral Cancer (UK).

WHO Collaborating Centre for Oral Cancer-Expert Symposium on Oral Potentially Malignant Disorders

In this guest blog by Professor Saman Warnakulasuriya, Emeritus Professor at King’s College London and Director WHO Collaborating Centre for Oral Cancer, he writes about a recent Dental event held in the College:

On 4 and 5 March 2020, the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow hosted an Expert Symposium on Oral Potentially Malignant Disorders (OPMDs) organised by the World Health Organization (WHO) Collaborating Centre for Oral Cancer (UK).

With the objective to facilitate personal exchange, invited experts from the UK, USA, Brazil, Spain, Portugal and Australia with a wealth of collective experience on OPMDs, met in the College and discussed the current status and new developments in the field. Two experts who could not travel to Scotland due to the current global situation joined the meeting via a web link. The symposium was chaired by Professor Graham Ogden, the College’s former Vice President (Dental) and Dean of the Faculty of Dental Surgery.

The group discussed both the published definitions and proposals to modify the WHO definitions, classifications and descriptions of oral leukoplakia and oral lichenoid lesions. Four systematic reviews were presented outlining the current evidence on malignant transformation of four common conditions: oral leukoplakia, proliferative verrucous leukoplakia, oral lichen planus and oral submucous fibrosis.

The expert group further looked at the current advances on diagnostic techniques and biomarkers for diagnosing and assessing the risk of various OPMDs. The final session was devoted to discussing the surgical and medical management of oral leukoplakia and oral submucous fibrosis.

Several interventions that have been demonstrated to reduce risk for cancer development were discussed including randomised controlled trials comparing effects of surgery, medical or complementary treatments (local or systemic) or risk factor cessation versus placebo. While none of the interventional studies specifically measured cancer development, it was the experts’ opinion that a number of the medical treatments hypothetically can impact upon putative pathways leading to cancer development,

All presentations given at the workshop will be written up for publication as a special supplement of Oral Diseases in a forthcoming volume. The expert group wishes to thank the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow for providing facilities for holding this symposium and a special word of thanks to Lyn Cranwell for her kind assistance in all matters connected with the organisation of the workshop.

The expert group wishes to thank Mr Steve W. Kess Vice President, Global Professional Relations and Henry Schein Care Foundation for providing an Educational Grant for travel expenses.

Pictured above are:

Last row: Prof Newell Johnson (Australia), Prof Miguel Gonzalez Moles (Spain), Dr Fernanda Weber Mello (Brazil), Professor Phil Sloan (UK), Prof Edward Odell (UK)

Middle row: Dr Luis Monteiro (Portugal), Prof Jose M. Aguirre (Spain)

Front row: Prof Saman Warnakulasuriya (UK), Prof Graham Ogden (UK), Prof Ross Kerr (USA)

This article was written by Professor Saman Warnakulasuriya.


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