Head and Neck Cancer Treatment in India
Indian hospitals offer some of the best cancer treatment options with their latest technology and world-class infrastructure. Patients can avail the most advanced cancer treatment at an affordable cost. When it comes to head and neck cancer, these facilities consider the stage and location of the malignancy and then design a patient-specific treatment plan.
Know About Head and Neck Cancer
Head and neck cancers are more common in men than women. It begins in the cells that line the mucosal surfaces in the head and neck area, e.g., mouth, nose and throat. Head and neck cancers are often referred to as squamous cell carcinomas and are common in smokers and people who drink a lot of alcohol, particularly spirits, and even more common in people who do both.
Types of Head and Neck Cancer
Some of the different types of head and neck cancer include the following:
Nasopharyngeal Cancer – The nasopharynx is the airway passageway in the upper part of the nose, at the back of the nose.
Salivary Gland Cancer – Saliva produced by the salivary gland is the fluid that is released within the mouth in order to keep the mouth moist.
Hypopharyngeal and Laryngeal Cancer – The larynx is a tube-shaped organ located in the neck and it is used for swallowing, breathing and talking. The hypopharynx, also referred to as the gullet, is the lower part of the throat surrounding the larynx.
Oropharyngeal and Oral Cancer – Oral part includes the mouth and tongue. The middle part of the throat is included in the oropharynx.
Nasal Cavity Cancer and Paranasal Sinus – The space at the back of the nose from where air passes on the way to the throat is known as the nasal cavity. The air-filled areas surrounding the nasal cavity is known as the paranasal sinuses.
Diagnosis of Head and Neck Cancer
The main tests for diagnosing head and neck cancer are:
CT scan and MRI scans – This is taken to obtain the images of the areas of cancer
Biopsy – A small tissue from the pancreas is removed and checked.
Most Advanced Treatment Approaches
Surgical Treatment Approach
Surgery aims at removing the cancer completely from the affected part. This is usually done before radiation therapy.Types of surgery for head and neck cancer include:Excision,Laser Technology,Lymph Node Dissection and Reconstructive (Plastic) Surgery.
Radiation Therapy Treatment Approach
Primary cancer can be easily treated with the help of radiation therapy. India’s leading cancer hospitals now have some of the world’s most advanced radiation equipment like Novelis, Linac, Gamma Knife and Cyberknife for treatments.
Radiation therapy reduces the size of the tumour prior to surgery or to obviate the symptoms of cancer, such as pain, bleeding or blockage. The two types of radiation therapy used are:
IMRT – This intensity modulated radiation therapy is used to treat specific areas inside the tumour which are targeted by this computer-controlled X-ray accelerators that deliver precise radiation doses.
EBT – In external beam therapy, high-energy beam X-rays are delivered at the location of the tumour. The rays have the ability to destroy cancer cells while sparing nearby healthy tissues
Photodynamic Therapy Approach
A combination of laser light of a specific wavelength and a light-sensitive drug is used to destroy cancer cells in this treatment. The drug is injected into the vein, causing it to circulate in the bloodstream. Cells then take up the drug as they get nutrients from the blood. Cancer cells tend to absorb more quantity of the drug than healthy cells. When a laser is shone onto the cancer, the drug is triggered to react with oxygen, which then destroys the cancer cells.
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