Cytomorphometrical Analysis of Exfoliated Buccal Mucosal Cells: Effect of Smoking
Introduction: Exfoliative cytology is a non-aggressive, non-invasive procedure with higher patient compliance and is therefore, an attractive technique for the early diagnosis of oral lesions. The purpose of this study is to evaluate and compare cytological changes using morphometric analysis of the exfoliated buccal mucosal cells in smokers, with results obtained for non-smokers. Methods: Smears were collected from the clinically normal buccal mucosa of 120 individuals. Age range of subjects taken was 40-60 years. Smears were then stained with Papanicolaou stain. Results: Mean NA for smokers was significantly elevated compared with the mean NA for non-smokers. Mean CA in smokers was decreased as compared to non-smokers but the difference was not significant. Also, N/C ratio was significantly elevated in smokers group. With increasing heavy exposure in duration of years, Cytomorphometric changes show significant altered values for all three measured parameters (NA, CA and N/C ratio). Conclusion: Increase in NA and decreased CA as well as altered N/C ratio would appear to be due to smoking tobacco. Cytomorphometric analysis can be used regularly to detect these cell alterations. This method can also aid in motivating individuals to withdraw from adverse eff ects of tobacco smoking. Currently, use of exfoliative cytology has increased as an adjunct to screening of precancerous lesions and malignancies of the oral cavity.