Head and Neck Cancer Life Expectancy

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Head and neck cancer is the cancer of lymph nodes present in the upper part of the neck, salivary glands, paranasal sinuses, larynx, mouth or oral cavity, nasal cavity, pharynx and mucosal membranes. Pharynx consists of nasopharynx- lower part of the neck, oropharynx- middle part of the pharynx and hypopharynx- upper part of the pharynx. Eye cancer, thyroid cancer, scalp cancer, skin cancer, brain cancer and the bones present in the face region are not included in the list of head and neck cancer. One of the simplest definitions of cancer can be termed as uncontrollable division of cells. We all know that cell is the basic unit of life. Tumors are formed by the extra cells that come together as tissues. Tumors are of two types- Benign tumors and malignant tumors. Benign tumors are not hazardous to the body. We cannot say the same about malignant tumors. Malignant tumors are responsible for cancer. Hence, any lump in the body should not go unnoticed.

Cancer can be divided into four stages. First stage of cancer is the initial stage of cancer. At this stage, cancer can be cured easily. Second and third stages of cancer are also curable with use of modern technology. Advancements in medical field can cure cancer in its third stage. However, when the cancer reaches its fourth stage it is quite difficult to treat. Hence, early signs of head and neck cancer should be treated as early as possible.

Physical symptoms of head and neck cancer:

  • Blockage of nose
  • Bleeding of nose
  • Consistent pain in the ear for several weeks
  • Problem in swallowing of food
  • Change in the skin color
  • Presence of lumps in the throat
  • Change in the voice can be a sign for larynx cancer
  • Pain in the upper jaw or face
  • Swelling around the eyes

If these symptoms are steady for more than two weeks, visit your physician or doctor as soon as possible. It is not necessary that symptoms arisen are of cancer only; they can be symptoms of any other disease. So, do not panic and talk to your doctor. It is better to consult doctor early than to regret later.

Head and neck cancer life expectancy:

Generally, the head and neck cancer life expectancy for the patients who are in their last stage is five years after treatment and diagnosis. General health of the person and his age are the two factors that affect the life expectancy after neck and head cancer diagnosis. Radiotherapy, chemotherapy and surgery are the three primary treatments for cancer. These treatments can be used in combinations to cure cancer depending upon its intensity or the level to which it has spread. One must note that radiation and chemotherapy have severe side-effects. Your doctor will elaborate you on those side-effects. Chemotherapy has hair loss as a common side-effect.

Measures to increase head and neck cancer life expectancy:

Regular visit to doctor post treatment, having healthy and balanced diet, exercising regularly and living stress free life are ways that increase head and neck cancer life expectancy.

Take care!

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