Head and Neck Cancer – Treatment and Surgery from Best Cancer Hospitals in India
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Head and Neck Cancer
Cancers that are known collectively as head and neck cancers usually begin in the squamous cells that line the moist, mucosal surfaces inside the head and neck. These squamous cell cancers are often referred to as squamous cell carcinomas of the head and neck. Head and neck cancer includes cancers of the mouth, nose, sinuses, salivary glands, throat, and lymph nodes in the neck. Most begin in the moist tissues that line the mouth, nose and throat. Symptoms include:
- A Lump or sore that does not heal.
- A Sore throat that does not go away.
- Trouble Swallowing.
- A Change or Hoarseness in the voice.Get Estimate
Major Types of Head and Neck Cancers are: • Hypopharyngeal Cancer
The Hypopharynx is the bottom part of the pharynx (throat).The pharynx is a hollow tube about five inches long that starts behind the nose and goes down to the neck to become part of the esophagus (the tube that goes to the stomach). Air and food pass through the pharynx on the way to the windpipe (trachea) or the esophagus.
Cancer of the Hypopharynx is a disease in which cancerous (malignant) cells are found in the tissues of the hypopharynx. Cancer of the hypopharynx most commonly starts in the cells that line the hypopharynx, called squamous cells, and is called squamous cell cancer. If cancer starts in the lymph cells of the hypopharynx, it is considered non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.• Hypopharyngeal Cancer
There are three main parts of the larynx: the glottis (the middle part of the larynx where the vocal cords are located); the supraglottis (the tissue above the glottis); and the subglottis (the tissue below the glottis). The subglottis connects to the trachea, which takes air to the lungs.
Cancer of the larynx is a disease in which cancerous (malignant) cells are found in the tissues of the larynx. It is most commonly found in people who smoke. If a person who smokes develops cancer of the larynx, they should stop smoking.• Salivary Gland Cancer
The symptoms that may indicate such cancers are painless and/or increased swelling under the chin or around the jawbone, numbness of the face, inability to move the face muscles and facial pain, chin or neck pain as well.• Thyroid Cancer
Cancer of the thyroid is a disease in which cancerous (malignant) cells develop in the tissues of the thyroid gland. The thyroid gland makes important hormones that help the body function normally.Get Estimate
How are Head and Neck Cancers Diagnosed
- Physical Examination may include visual inspection of the oral and nasal cavities, neck, throat, and tongue using a small mirror and/or lights. The doctor may also feel for lumps on the neck, lips, gums, and cheeks.
- Endoscopy is the use of a thin, lighted tube called an endoscope to examine areas inside the body. The type of endoscope the doctor uses depends on the area being examined. For example, a laryngoscope is inserted through the mouth to view the larynx; an esophagoscope is inserted through the mouth to examine the esophagus; and a nasopharyngoscope is inserted through the nose so the doctor can see the nasal cavity and nasopharynx.
- Laboratory tests examine samples of blood, urine, or other substances from the body.
- X-rays create images of areas inside the head and neck on film.
- CT (or CAT) Scan is a series of detailed pictures of areas inside the head and neck created by a computer linked to an x-ray machine.
- Magnetic Resonance Imaging (or MRI) uses a powerful magnet linked to a computer to create detailed pictures of areas inside the head and neck.
- PET Scan uses sugar that is modified in a specific way so it is absorbed by cancer cells and appears as dark areas on the scan.
- Biopsy is the removal of tissue. A pathologist studies the tissue under a microscope to make a diagnosis. A biopsy is the only sure way to tell whether a person has cancer.Request a Call Back
Treatment of Head and Neck Cancer at World Class Hospitals in India
Surgery: During surgery, the goal is to remove the cancerous tissue and some of the healthy tissue around it . A surgical oncologist is a doctor who specializes in treating cancer using surgery. Types of surgery for head and neck cancer include:
- Excision. This is an operation to remove the cancerous tissue and the margin around it.
- Laser Technology. This may be used to treat early-stage tumors, especially in larynx cancer.
- Lymph Node Dissection. If the doctor suspects that the cancer has spread, the doctor may remove lymph nodes in the neck, possibly causing stiffness in the shoulders afterward. This may be done at the same time as an excision.
- Reconstructive (Plastic) Surgery. This type of operation is aimed at restoring a person’s appearance and function of the affected area. If the surgery requires major tissue removal (for example, removing the jaw, skin, pharynx, or tongue), reconstructive or plastic surgery may be done to replace the missing tissue.
Chemotherapy: Chemotherapy is the use of anti-cancer (cytotoxic) drugs to destroy cancer cells. Chemotherapy drugs work by disrupting the growth of cancer cells. Chemotherapy drugs are usually given into a vein (intravenously). As the drugs circulate in the bloodstream, they can reach cancer cells all over the body. When chemotherapy is given to treat head and neck cancer, it’s usually given in combination with radiotherapy. Chemotherapy has been shown to enhance the effectiveness of radiation therapy, improving cure rates compared to radiation therapy alone for advanced cancers such as those originating in the nasopharynx.
Radiation therapy: Radiation therapy alone or in combination with chemotherapy is standard curative treatment for many patients with head and neck cancers. Which approach is used depends on the extent of the tumor; radiation and chemotherapy are used in combination when treating more advanced disease. In selected situations, such as oral cavity tumors, the patient undergoes surgery followed by radiation therapy and/or chemotherapy. Radiation therapy or a combination of radiation and chemotherapy may be used to treat patients who would develop significant side effects from the surgery, those with inoperable cancers or those who have a poor prognosis after surgery.Get Estimate
Minimally Invasive Surgery for Head and Neck Cancer at World Class Hospitals in India
Minimally invasive surgical techniques are used when it is possible to remove the tumors that are located near the structures involved in sensory and physical functioning. In many cases, patients can recover more quickly when treated with minimally invasive surgery compared with traditional or open surgery.
Endoscopic Laser Surgery: This technique may be used to remove tumors in the larynx (voice box) or pharynx (throat) while preserving the structures involved in speech and swallowing. The surgeon inserts a thin, lighted tube called an endoscope through the patient’s mouth and into the throat. Surgeons remove the tumor using a special laser that is attached to the endoscope. Endoscopic laser surgery is often performed on an outpatient basis with a safe, fast-acting anesthetic that wears off quickly after the procedure.
Minimally Invasive Video-Assisted Thyroidectomy (MIVAT): A tiny video camera that is attached to an endoscope is used to remove thyroid tumors through a small incision.
Robotic Surgery: Tumors of the tongue and tonsils can be removed with the aid of small robotic arms that are placed in the mouth, avoiding the need to make a large incision or to split the jawbone.Get Estimate
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