March 18, 2021
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Throat cancer is a type of head and neck cancer that occurs in the pharynx or the larynx. The throat is important to many vital functions like eating, breathing, and speaking, so symptoms of throat cancer may get in the way of daily activities.
When cancerous tumors develop in the larynx – or voice box – it can render you unable to speak. When cancerous tumors develop in the pharynx, it can disrupt your breathing, chewing, or swallowing.
Frequent symptoms of throat cancer
Throat cancer symptoms are largely determined by the location of the tumor in the head and neck region. Local spread of throat cancer to nearby tissues in the pharynx and larynx can lead to these common symptoms:
Rare symptoms of throat cancer
To further protect yourself, it may be a good idea to learn about some less common signs of throat cancer, like:
These symptoms are non-specific, which means they can be attributed to several illnesses like the common cold, so you may be less inclined to think throat cancer, but if they persist you might want to see your dentist or a health care professional.
These symptoms are also less common because they develop with advanced disease. Still, the aggressiveness of throat cancer differs among people so these rare symptoms may be more common or develop more quickly in some people than others. If eating, speaking, or swallowing become increasingly difficult seek immediate medical attention as these symptoms may be life threatening.
Of note, advanced disease may also lead to metastasis – the spread of cancer throughout the body. This precipitates a whole host of symptoms depending on where the cancer is spread. For example, throat cancer that metastasizes to the lungs may cause shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, whereas metastasis to the bone may cause bone pain.
Complications of throat cancer
Much of the complications of throat cancer are attributed to surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation treatments. Although, difficulty eating or talking and facial or neck disfigurement are two common complications.
Depending on the extent of cancer that needs to be removed, nearby structures may be compromised during surgery affecting the voice box and soft tissues of the pharynx, exacerbating your symptoms.
Radiation therapy can increase your likelihood of developing dental caries and periodontal disease, as well as mucositis, thickened secretions, mucosal infections, pain, and sensory disruptions in the mouth and throat areas.
When to seek medical attention
If you notice anything unusual about the way you feel or how your body functions – especially if the abnormality persists or worsens – contact a health care professional. Although cancer may be unlikely in many instances, seeing a health care professional can result in an accurate diagnosis and treatment of your symptoms. If you experience life-threatening symptoms – like trouble breathing or eating or if you notice a large lump in the head or neck region, particularly one that is causing you to have difficulty swallowing – seek immediate medical attention.
Many of the aforementioned symptoms will not result in a diagnosis of throat cancer. Still, it is important to remain vigilant about changes to the color and texture of your mouth and throat, especially with cancer rates on the rise, due to recent increases in tobacco product use. It is easy to miss symptoms of throat cancer. To help protect yourself, use a mirror to periodically check the inside of your mouth and throat, and also schedule regular dental checkups.
Source: Very Well Health
Stellapharm is one of leading generics pharmaceutical companies and strong producer of anti-viral drugs in Vietnam. The company established in Vietnam in 2000; and focuses on both prescription drugs and non-prescription especially in cardiovascular diseases, antiviral drugs, anti-diabetics drugs, etc. and our products are now used by millions of patients in more than 50 countries worldwide.
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Additional information for this article: Stellapharm J.V. Co., Ltd. – Branch 1
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