People might be astonished when informed that there were days when common cold was the most dangerous disease. Even though we, as humans, are making tremendous progress in various fields, including medicine, a new disease comes up every year that terrifies the human race. But, the disease we are about to discuss has been with humans for many years now and still is the most devastating one in the human history: Cancer.
Cancer is a class of diseases in which abnormal cells multiply and divide uncontrollably in the body forming malignant tumor growths. Throat cancer refers to cancerous tumours that develop in your throat (pharynx), voice box (larynx) or tonsils.
Throat is a muscular tube that begins behind your nose and ends in your neck. Throat cancer most often begins in the flat cells that line the inside of your throat. Throat cancer can also affect the piece of cartilage (epiglottis) that acts as a lid for your windpipe.
Throat cancer is often grouped into two categories: pharyngeal cancer and laryngeal cancer. Pharyngeal cancer forms in the pharynx (the hollow tube that runs from behind your nose to the top of your windpipe). Laryngeal cancer forms in the larynx (your voice box).
Signs and Symptoms of Throat Cancer:
It can be difficult to detect throat cancer in its early stages. Look out for the following signs and symptoms to detect it as early as possible.
● Chronic cough
● Change in your voice, such as hoarseness or not speaking clearly
● Trouble swallowing also known as dysphagia
● Sore throat
● Swelling of the eyes, jaw, throat or neck
● Swollen lymph nodes in the neck
● Constant need to clear your throat
● Persistent ear pain
● Unexplainable weight loss
If you experience any of these symptoms and they do not improve over a period of two or three weeks, consult an Oncologist immediately.
Causes and risk factors of throat cancer:
Men are most likely to develop throat cancer than women. Certain lifestyle habits increase the risk of developing throat cancer. These include:
● Smoking, chewing tobacco
● Excessive alcohol consumption
● Vitamin A deficiency
● Exposure to asbestos
● Poor dental hygiene
Throat Cancer Treatment options:
If diagnosed early, throat cancer has high survival rate. But, throat cancer may not be curable if malignant cells spread to the other parts of the body beyond the neck and head. However, people can undergo treatment to prolong their life and slow the progression of the cancer. Treatment options available are:
Detecting cancer in its early stages is the most important part of treatment. Early detection will increase the chances of survival. Apollo Hospitals has established 9 dedicated Apollo Cancer Hospitals across India that offer comprehensive cancer care. Consult a specialist with Apollo Hospitals today.