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Throat cancer indicates the cancer of the voice box, the vocal cords and other parts of the throat, such as the tonsils and oropharynx. Compared to other cancers, throat cancer is relatively uncommon. The National Cancer Institute estimates 1.1% of adults will be diagnosed with pharyngeal cancer within their lifetime. And an estimated 0.3% adults will be diagnosed with laryngeal cancer within their lifetime. Contact us to get affordable Throat Cancer Treatment in India from the top cancer surgeons in Delhi.
Types of Throat Cancer
There are several types of throat cancer. Although all throat cancers involve the growth and development of abnormal cells, your doctor has to identify the specific type to determine the most effective treatment plan.
The two primary types of throat cancer are:
- Squamous cell carcinoma: It is throat cancer of the flat cells lining the throat. This is the most common throat cancer in the United States.
- Adenocarcinoma: Throat cancer of the glandular cells and this type of laryngeal cancer is rare.
Along with these two main types, throat cancer can also be broken into two additional types: pharyngeal cancer that develops in the neck and throat, which includes:
- Nasopharynx cancer (upper part of the throat)
- Oropharynx cancer (middle part of the throat)
- Hypopharynx cancer (bottom part of the throat)
The other is laryngeal cancer which affects the larynx or voice box.
Causes and Risk Factors for Throat Cancer
No one knows the exact causes of throat cancer. Doctors cannot explain why one person gets this disease and another does not. Men are more likely to develop throat cancer than women. Certain lifestyle habits increases your risk of developing cancer of the throat:
- Age over 50
- Vitamin A deficiency
- Excessive alcohol consumption
- Poor dental hygiene
- Exposure to asbestos
- A person with a history of head and neck cancer
- HPV (Human Papillomavirus infections) are at higher risk for certain oropharyngeal cancers
- People diagnosed with throat cancer are also diagnosed with esophageal, lung or bladder cancer at the same time
Throat cancer in its early stages can be difficult to detect. Common signs and symptoms of throat cancer are:
- Trouble swallowing or dysphagia
- A change in your voice
- Sore throat
- Weight loss
- Persistent cough, cough up blood
- Constant need to clear your throat
- Swollen lymph nodes in the neck
- Ear pain
- Bad breath
Make an appointment with your doctor if you have any of these symptoms and they do not improve after two to three weeks. Get in touch with us to know the Throat Cancer Surgery Cost in India at the Best Hospital for Cancer Surgery in India.
Diagnosing Throat Cancer
During your appointment, your doctor will ask you about your symptoms and medical history. If you’ve been experiencing the above mentioned symptoms with no improvement or no other explanation, then they may suspect throat cancer. Book your Affordable Throat Cancer Treatment in India by sending us your query on our website.
To check for throat cancer, your doctor will perform a direct or an indirect laryngoscopy or will refer you to a specialist for the procedure. A laryngoscopy gives your doctor a closer view of your throat. If this test reveals abnormalities, then your doctor take a tissue sample from your throat, called a biopsy and test the sample for cancer. Your doctor will recommend one of the following biopsies:
- Conventional biopsy
- Fine needle aspiration (FNA)
- Endoscopic biopsy
Imaging tests can help doctors to find a tumor and can also show how big it is and how far it has spread. The imaging tests include:
- Positron Emission Tomography (PET) scan
- Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
- Computed Tomography (CT) scan
- Barium swallow
Staging Throat Cancer
If your doctor finds cancerous cells in your throat, he/she will order additional tests to identify the stage and extent of your cancer. The stages range from 0 to IV:
- Stage 0: The tumor has not invaded beyond the throat
- Stage I: The tumor is less than 7 cm and limited to the throat
- Stage II: The tumor is slightly larger than 7 cm, but still limited to the throat
- Stage III: The tumor has grown and spread to the nearby tissues and organs
- Stage IV: The tumor has spread to the lymph nodes or distant organs
Throughout the treatment, you’ll work closely with a variety of specialists which include:
- An oncologist who perform surgical procedures such as removal of tumors
- A pathologist who examines the tissue samples from your biopsy
- A radiation oncologist who treats your cancer using radiation therapy
If you have a biopsy or surgery, then you’ll have an anaesthesiologist who administers anesthesia and monitors your condition during the procedure. Your doctor may refer to an otolaryngologist (an ear, nose and throat doctor) and medical oncologist. Usually, the treatment will start within a few weeks of the diagnosis. Send us your inquiry to know the Total Package for Throat Cancer Surgery in India.
The treatment options for throat cancer include surgery, radiation therapy and chemotherapy. Depending on the extent of your disease your doctor will recommend the treatment method for you. Often there is time to talk to your doctor regarding your treatment choices and get a second opinion before deciding the treatment. Get in touch with us to know the Throat Cancer Surgery Charges in India.
Get a Second Opinion
Before starting treatment, you may want to get a second opinion about your diagnosis and treatment plan. Your doctor may refer you to you may ask for a referral to one or more specialists.
Preparing for the Treatment
The doctor can describe your treatment choices and results to expect for each treatment option. You and your doctor can work together to develop a treatment plan which meets your needs and personal values. The choice of treatment depends on a number of factors including your general health, where in the larynx the cancer began, size of tumor and whether the cancer has spread. Fill up our free consultation form to know the best hospital for throat cancer treatment in Delhi.
Also known as radiotherapy, it uses high-energy X-rays to kill the cancer cells. These rays are aimed at the tumor and tissue around it. It is local therapy which affects only in the treated area. Usually, the treatments are given five days a week for five to eight weeks. Types of radiation therapy include:
- Intensity-modulated radiotherapy and 3D-conformal radiation therapy: The radiation beams are tailored to the shape of the tumor. It is the most common way the radiation is given for laryngeal and hypopharyngeal cancer.
- Proton therapy: It uses the beams of protons to deliver radiation to the tumor. Presently, it is not a standard treatment option for most types of throat cancer.
- Brachytherapy: The radioactive seeds are placed directly inside the tumor or close to the tumor. Although this type of radiation could be used for laryngeal and hypopharyngeal cancer, it is rare.
If the tumor in the throat is small, then your doctor may surgically remove it. The surgery is done at the hospital while you are under sedation. Your doctor will recommend one of the following surgical procedures:
- Laryngectmoy: It removes all or a portion of your voice box, depending on the severity of cancer. Some people can speak normally post surgery but some of them must learn to speak without a voice box.
- Neck dissection: If throat cancer spreads within the neck, your doctor may remove some of the lymph nodes.
- Pharyngectomy: It removes a part of your throat.
After surgery, some people may need a feeding tube temporarily.
It uses the drugs to kill cancer cells. Your doctor may suggest one drug or a combination of drugs. The drugs for cancer of the larynx are given by injection into the bloodstream and it travel throughout the body.
Chemotherapy is used to treat laryngeal cancer in several ways:
- Before surgery or radiation therapy: In some cases, drugs are used to shrink a large tumor before surgery or radiation therapy.
- After surgery or radiation therapy: Chemotherapy may be used post surgery or radiation therapy to kill cancer cells that mey be left. It may also be used for treating cancers that have spread.
- Instead of surgery: It may be used along with radiation therapy instead of surgery. The larynx is not removed and the voice is spared.
Chemotherapy may be given in an outpatient part of the hospital, at a doctor’s office or at home. A hospital stay may rarely be needed.
Some people with throat cancer need therapy after treatment to relearn how to speak. This can be improved by working with a speech therapist or a physical therapist. Additionally, some people with throat cancer may experience the following complications:
- Disfigurement of the neck or face
- Difficulty swallowing
- Skin hardening around the neck
- Difficulty breathing
- Inability to speak
You can discuss about the reconstructive surgery with your doctor if you have a face or neck disfigurement post surgery. Occupational therapists can help with the sealing difficulty.
Follow-up care is significant post throat cancer treatment. You will need regular check-ups to ensure that any changes in your health will be noted. So that the problems can be found and treated as soon as possible. Your doctor will closely check to be sure that the cancer has not returned. The check-ups will include exams of the neck, stoma and throat. From time to time, your doctor may do a complete physical exam and take x-rays.
Almost any cancer treatment can have side effects of which some will last for a few weeks to months but others can last for the rest of your life. Do not hesitate to tell you cancer care team about any symptoms or side effects which bother you, so that they can help you to manage them. It is quite significant to report any new symptoms to your doctor right away since this will help your doctor find the recurrent cancer as soon as possible, when the likelihood for successful treatment is greatest.
Some patients may need to adjust what they eat during and after treatment. They may also need nutritional supplements to help them get the required nutrition. Some people may even need to have a feeding tube placed in the stomach for a short time post treatment. A team of nutritionists and doctors can work with you to help manage your individual nutritional needs which will aid you to maintain your weight and get the required nutrients. Contact us to get your throat cancer surgery from the Top Oncologist in Mumbai.