Abstract—Tobacco smoking is associated with increasing risk of oropharyngeal cancer. Oral cytology, mainly based on the presence of nuclear or cytoplasmic alterations, can easily be performed to detect cancer at an early stage and provides a quantitative technique. The objective of the present study was to assess the effect of smoking on buccal mucosa using cytomorphometry. This case control study included 36 smoker subjects and 36 non-smoker controls between the age of 30 and 70 years. Buccal epithelial cells were collected with a brush and fixed smears were stained with Papanicolaou stain and cytomorphometric analysis performed using image analysis software (Image J v 1.47). Smoker group was found to have higher mean nuclear diameter (MND), lower in mean Cellular diameter (MCD), and higher nucleo-cytoplasmic ratio as compared to normal subjects. This change in nuclear parameters indicates smoking-related cellular adaptation, leading to progression towards dysplasia. Cytomorphometric changes could prove to be the earliest indicators of these cellular alterations.
Keywords: Cytomorphometry, Smoker, Buccal Mucosa.
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