Head and Neck Cancer

Head and neck cancer includes cancers of the mouth, sinuses, nose and throat.  At MaineHealth, our cancer specialists provide the full range of treatment for patients with head and neck cancer. Early detection is important for the most effective treatment.

What is head and neck cancer? 

Head and neck cancer includes cancers that affect several areas, including the:

  • Mouth
  • Lips
  • Nose and sinuses
  • Throat
  • Tonsils
  • Larynx
  • Salivary glands
  • Lymph nodes in neck
  • Skin

Head and Neck Cancer Symptoms

Head and neck cancer symptoms can be detected early

Many head and neck cancers can be cured if they are caught early enough. Talk to you doctor if you are experiencing symptoms associated with head and neck cancer. Some symptoms include:

  • Lump, sore, or growth that doesn’t go away
  • Blood in saliva
  • Swallowing issues
  • Ear pain
  • Voice changes
  • Sore throat that does not heal
  • Feeling overly tired

Head and Neck Cancer Diagnosis

Head and neck cancer tests

Testing for head and neck cancers can include the following:

  • Physical exam
  • HPV testing
  • Endoscopy
  • Biopsy
  • X-ray
  • Ultrasound and other scans

Head and Neck Cancer Treatment

Head and neck cancer treatment may include different therapies

Patients have better treatment outcomes when their cancer is diagnosed early. Examples of treatment include:

  • Surgery
  • Chemotherapy
  • Radiation
  • Targeted therapies.

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