Head and Neck Cancer
This type of cancer can begin in any of these places: larynx, nasal cavity, mouth, paranasal sinuses, throat, or salivary glands.
Symptoms of head and neck cancer include a growth or sore in the mouth or nose, a lump in the neck, a lingering sore throat, and numbness in the face. These symptoms may also indicate other, less serious conditions.
To help with the diagnosis, your doctor will do a thorough exam of your head and neck. Your doctor may use a flexible tube with a light at the end or a small mirror to help see your throat, the base of the tongue, and the larynx.
Your doctor will discuss treatment options with you. You may need surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, or biological therapy, which helps the immune system fight infections and other diseases.
Side effects of treatment for head and neck cancer depend on the specific treatment given and can vary from patient to patient. Your cancer specialist will work with you to keep any side effects at a minimum.
The best way to prevent this type of cancer is to quit smoking if you smoke. Get regular medical checkups that include an exam of the mouth, head, and neck.
Learn more about head and neck cancer from the National Cancer Institute (NCI) Physician Data Query (PDQ®) for patients. It includes information about prevention, screening, and treatment.