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Mar 14, 3:01 AM EDT

West Virginia University offering free oral cancer screening

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (AP) -- West Virginia University is offering free oral cancer screenings next month in Morgantown.

The university said in a news release that West Virginia ranks fourth in the U.S. for instances of oral cavity and pharynx cancer. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention listed West Virginia behind Kentucky, Hawaii and South Dakota.

West Virginia University Medicine head and neck surgeon Rusha Patel said in the release that the state has one of the highest rates of oral and smoking tobacco use in the country, which is among the risk factors for head and neck cancers.

Patel said screening events are important for early detection and education.

The screenings will be given from 9 a.m. to noon on April 7 at the Physician Office Center.

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