Head & Neck Cancer

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Head and neck cancers are cancers that typically start in areas of the head and neck such as the mouth, nose or throat. Banner MD Anderson is dedicated to comprehensive and customized care for people with benign (not cancer) or malignant (cancer) tumors of the head and neck. We take a team approach to ensure you receive the most-advanced treatment with the least impact on your body. And we have special expertise and highly skilled professionals to help you maintain speech, swallowing and hearing.

Finding head and neck cancer in the early stages and diagnosing it accurately can help your treatment to be more successful. Our experts are highly specialized and accomplished in recognizing the signs and symptoms of head and neck cancer, as well as diagnosing and staging head and neck cancers, from the more common cancers to the extremely rare ones.

Tumors treated in the Head and Neck Center include but are not limited to those of the:

  • Oral cavity (mouth, lips, gums, cheeks, tongue, palate and mouth floor)
  • Pharynx or throat (including the oropharynx (behind the mouth), nasopharynx (behind the nasal passage) and hypopharynx (behind the voice box))
  • Larynx
  • Thyroid and Parathyroid
  • Salivary glands
  • Skin of the head and neck, including melanoma
  • Nasal cavity and paranasal sinuses
  • Skull base
  • Ear and temporal bone
  • Eye cancer
  • Neck

In addition, the Head and Neck program treats:

  • Acoustic neuroma (vestibular schwannoma)
  • Sarcomas of the head and neck
  • Head and neck issues in patients with tumors elsewhere in the body

Treatment Approach

When you are treated for a head and neck tumor at Banner MD Anderson, you’ll receive the undivided focus of a team of physicians and scientists that may include oncologists, surgeons, radiation oncologists, neuroradiologists and plastic surgeons. They are joined by nurses, speech pathologists, audiologists, nutritionists, psychologists and social workers with special training in head and neck cancers. Working together, they prepare a customized plan of care just for you.  

Team Approach to Care

Head and neck cancers and their treatment often affect swallowing, speech, hearing and quality of life. We are one of the nation’s leaders in helping patients meet these challenges. Our services include a state-of-the-art swallowing function laboratory, as well as specialized experts to help you regain the ability to speak after treatment for cancer of the voice box and throat.

At Banner MD Anderson you’re surrounded by the strength of one of the nation’s foremost comprehensive cancer centers, which has all the services needed to treat the whole person – not just the disease.