Head and Neck Cancer

Illustration of the lymph nodes in 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

Using tobacco or alcohol increases your risk. In fact, 85 percent of head and neck cancers are linked to tobacco use, including smoking and smokeless tobacco. If found early, these cancers are often curable. Treatments may include surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy or a combination. Treatments can affect eating, speaking or even breathing, so patients may need rehabilitation.

NIH: National Cancer Institute

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