Pain and tenderness
It is common to feel pain associated with the lesion, even in benign lessions. For example, carcinoma of the lip is non-tender but will become tender in a few cases, when the patient develops ulcers of the lip as a result of cancer. On the other hand, the exophytic type without ulcers is not painful. Carcinoma of the tongue is non-tender, with an initially painless nodule that later becomes painful when it ulcerates. Sometimes, patients report pain in the ear, located in the same side of the lesion. This is due to a common innervation shared by both the ear and the tongue. Many other types of cancer can be painless initially, but they become painful after a while.