What exactly is head and neck cancer?
The term “head and neck cancer” refers to a variety of malignant tumours that arise in or around the throat, larynx, nose, sinuses, and mouth.
Squamous cell carcinomas account for the majority of head and neck cancers.
Head and neck cancers come in a variety of forms.
There are five different forms of head and neck cancer.
1) Cancer of the larynx and hypopharynx.
2)Cancer of the nasal cavity and paranasal sinuses.
3)Nasopharyngeal cancer is a type of cancer that affects the nose and throat.
4)Oropharyngeal and oral cancers
5) Cancer of the salivary glands.
What factors contribute to the development of head and neck cancer?
1)Alcohol and tobacco use, including secondhand smoke and smokeless tobacco, sometimes known as “chewing tobacco” or “snuff,” are the two leading causes of head and neck malignancies, including cancers of the oral cavity, hypopharynx, and voice box.
2)Paan (betel quid)- Using paan (betel quid) in the mouth, which is a popular practice in Southeast Asia, has been linked to a higher risk of mouth cancer.
3)Occupational exposure to wood dust is linked to a higher incidence of nasopharyngeal cancer.
4)Cancer-causing human papillomavirus (HPV) infection is a risk factor for oropharyngeal malignancies involving the tonsils or the base of the tongue.
5)Exposure to radiation. Radiation to the head and neck, whether for noncancerous or cancerous disorders, increases the chance of salivary gland cancer.
6)Infection with the Epstein-Barr virus. Nasopharyngeal carcinoma and cancer of the salivary glands are linked to Epstein-Barr virus infection.
7)Ancestry is linked to a higher incidence of nasopharyngeal cancer.
8)Genetic problems that lie beneath the surface. Some hereditary conditions, such as Fanconi anaemia, might raise the chance of precancerous lesions and malignancies forming early in life.
Cancer of the head and neck symptoms
1) The oral cavity Unusual bleeding or discomfort in the mouth; a white or red patch on the gums, tongue, or mouth lining; a growth or swelling of the jaw that causes dentures to fit poorly or become unpleasant; and growth or swelling of the jaw that causes dentures to fit poorly or become uncomfortable.
2) The Throat (pharynx). Pain when swallowing; persistent pain in the neck or throat; pain or ringing in the ears; or difficulty hearing
3)Voice-over-internet-protocol (VoIP) (larynx). Breathing or speaking difficulties, swallowing pain, or earache are all possible symptoms.
4)Nasal cavity and paranasal sinuses Blockages in the sinuses that do not clear; chronic sinus infections that do not respond to antibiotic therapy; bleeding through the nose; recurrent headaches, oedema, or other eye issues; pain in the upper teeth; or denture troubles.
5)Glands of the salivary glands Swelling beneath the chin or around the jawbone, numbness or paralysis of the facial muscles, or persistent pain in the face, chin, or neck.
How are malignancies of the head and neck treated?
4)immunotherapy or a combination of therapies
The treatment approach for an individual patient is determined by a variety of criteria, including the tumour’s location, cancer stage, and the patient’s age and general condition.