Head neck cancer is a broad classification, and there are several parts in and around the area which can be affected by cancer. Since the risks, diagnosis and further treatment depend on the areas affected by this type of cancer, head neck cancer has been divided into groups and sub-groups. The broad classification of types of head neck cancer are as follows:
- Larynx: This form of cancer called laryngeal cancer is seen in the tube-like structure located at the top of the windpipe. Generally, this organ is called the voice box and is responsible for talking, swallowing and breathing as well.
- Gullet: The lower part of the throat, also called the gullet, may be affected by cancer and this also falls broadly under the category of head neck cancers.
- Sinuses or nasal passages: This is generally the area behind the nose through which the air passes to enter the throat. These passages can also be affected by cancer.
- Oral cancer: In a broad classification, everything related to the mouth and tongue falls under this classification. There are several other sub-divisions within the categories mentioned above.
Head neck cancer treatment options will depend largely on a few factors such as the age of the person, fitness levels, stage of cancer and so on. The symptoms and its severity will also determine the course of treatment. Some of the symptoms commonly seen in head neck cancer are as follows:
Generally, you will find that the areas most commonly affected by head neck cancer are the ears, nose, and mouth.
- Any cancer that has affected portions of the mouth most commonly result in the feeling of a lump in the throat. Also, there may be changes in the voice, swelling in the jaw, and blisters or sores in the mouth.
- While the symptoms will tend to persist, some may look or feel less serious such as a common cold or a cough, and frequent headaches.
- As far as the ears are concerned, it is generally seen that patients with head neck cancer complain of ringing in their ears and consistent ear pain.
You should consult a good specialist if any of the above symptoms persist for more time than necessary.