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Jaw Cancer - The development of a cancerous growth in tissues of the jaw, which may spread to surrounding tissues or another part of the body. The jaw comprises the mandible (the bones below the mouth, or the lower jaw) and the maxilla (the bones just above the mouth, or the upper jaw). Because the jaw is a common location for cysts, jaw cancer may be mistaken for a cyst. Also, because some tumors that grow in the tissues of the jaw are benign, a biopsy is the only way to properly diagnose jaw cancer. Tumors arising from the jawbone are called osteosarcomas.
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