Oral conditions | Medical Council of Canada
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Oral conditions

Version: February 2017
Legacy ID: 60


Although many diseases can affect the oral cavity, odontogenic infection (dental caries and periodontal infections) is the most common one. Apart from discomfort, infections may result in serious complications. Ruling out oral carcinoma is important.

Causal Conditions

(list not exhaustive)

  1. Congenital (e.g., cleft palate)
  2. Acquired
    1. Infection (e.g., candidiasis, gonococcal infection)
    2. Malignancy (e.g., adenocarcinoma, leukoplakia)
    3. Poor oral hygiene (e.g., caries, periodontal disease)
    4. Trauma (e.g., abuse)
    5. Toxic ingestion
    6. Xerostomia (e.g., age, medications)
    7. Systemic diseases (e.g., lichen planus, Behçet’s disease)

Key Objectives

Given a patient with an oral condition, the candidate will diagnose the likely cause, severity and complications, and will initiate an appropriate management plan. In particular, the candidate will determine whether the patient requires specialized care.

Enabling Objectives

Given a patient with an oral condition, the candidate will

  1. list and interpret critical clinical findings, including
    1. signs of potential malignancy;
    2. signs of infection;
  2. list and interpret critical investigations, including those required to exclude suspected systemic disease;
  3. construct an effective initial management plan, including
    1. counselling and educating the patient and/or the caregivers regarding oral hygiene and/or diet (e.g., sugar-containing drinks for children);
    2. counselling on smoking cessation and alcohol abuse;
    3. referring for specialized care, if necessary.