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Throat Cancer Treatment

Throat cancer has become one of the most debilitating and dreadful types of cancer. Millions of patients fall prey to throat cancer every year. Increasing mortality rate due to throat cancer is a major concern across the world. Healthcare experts state that quitting a sedentary lifestyle and improper eating habits can considerably help reduce the prevalence of throat cancer.

Throat Cancer Treatment

What is Throat Cancer?

Throat cancer is a fatal disease which can lead to life-threatening complications and may result in patient’s death. Throat cancer develops due to production of cancerous cells in vocal cords, tonsils, voice box, or any other region of patient’s throat. This disease can be successfully treated if detected in its initial phase.

Causes and Risk Factors

Exact cause of throat cancer is not known. However, medical professionals believe that mutations in genes may fuel up the chances of throat cancer. Major risk factors associated with this cancer are listed below.

  • Tobacco Consumption And Smoking – People who have a habit of chewing tobacco and who smoke regularly are more prone to throat cancer as compared to people who do not have such habits.
  • High Alcohol Consumption – People who consume an excessive amount of alcohol on daily basis are at a higher risk of getting throat cancer.
  • Human Papillomavirus (HPV) – A virus called human papillomavirus (HPV) can double up the chances of throat cancer.
  • Improper Diet – Improper eating habits can accelerate the growth of cancerous cells in throat area. One should eat a healthy diet containing fruits and vegetables.
  • Exposure To Certain Chemicals – Patients should stay away from certain cancer-causing chemicals like nickel, asbestos, and sulfuric acid fumes.

Potential Signs & Symptoms of Throat Cancer

Throat cancer can be easily misunderstood as regular throat problem as it does not show any considerable symptoms in primary stages. The enumerated list describes some potential signs and symptoms of throat cancer which should not be taken lightly.

Signs and Symptoms of Throat Cancer

  • A change in voice
  • Sudden weight loss
  • Sore throat
  • Trouble swallowing (dysphagia)
  • Need to clear throat constantly
  • Swollen lymph nodes in the neck
  • Persistent cough (bloody cough)
  • Wheezing
  • Hoarseness
  • Sharp ear pain

These symptoms may indicate an underlying serious throat problem including throat cancer. Therefore, patients should contact a well-experienced doctor if these symptoms persist for more than two weeks.

What Are The Major Types of Throat Cancer?

The following list elaborates the major types of throat cancer.

  • Oropharyngeal Cancer – This type of throat cancer starts due to abnormal cell multiplication in the oropharynx. Oropharynx is a part of throat located behind mouth near tonsils.
  • Nasopharyngeal Cancer – It usually occurs in the nasopharynx region which is located behind the nose.
  • Hypopharyngeal Cancer – Also referred to as ‘laryngopharyngeal cancer’, hypopharyngeal cancer occurs in the laryngopharynx region which is the lowermost part of throat.
  • Glottic Cancer – This cancer develops due to production of malignant cells in patient’s vocal cord.

Surgeons mostly order imaging tests like computerized tomography (CT scan), positron emission tomography (PET scan), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI scan), endoscopy, and biopsy to determine the presence and degree of throat cancer.

ALSO READ: Oral & Mouth Cancer Treatment

What Are The Treatment Options for Throat Cancer?

There are mainly three types of Throat Cancer Treatment namely chemotherapy, surgical procedure, and radiotherapy. These treatment methods for throat cancer can be explained as follows.

Surgical Procedure

Normally, a surgery is performed to directly remove the cancerous region in throat. The following are the widely performed surgical procedures for treating throat cancer.

  • Vocal Cord Stripping – This surgical intervention removes the outermost layer of cancerous tissue along with patient’s vocal cords.
  • Transoral Laser Microsurgery – This is a minimally invasive approach which removes the cancerous tissues with the help of an endoscope.
  • Cordectomy – Cordectomy procedure involves the removal of entire cancer affected vocal cord.
  • Laryngectomy – This surgery is performed to remove the larynx either partially or completely.
  • Pharyngectomy – This treatment procedure involves the removal of a part cancer affected throat or the entire throat.

Radiation Therapy

This treatment method uses high-energy radiation for destroying the cancerous cells in throat. Radiation therapy is generally given after completion of throat surgery to kill the remaining malignant tissues in throat.


Chemotherapy involves the use of various drugs for killing the malignant tissues in throat area. Chemotherapy drugs are mostly given in either intravenous or oral form.

Managing Life after Throat Cancer Surgery

Patients will not be able to eat properly for a couple of weeks following any type of Throat Cancer Treatment. During the healing phase, surgeons will advise taking food through a tube that will be passed to stomach via the nose of patient. Patients will face problems while speaking. Respective surgeons usually refer them to a speech therapist. A speech therapist can help them in expressing themselves more clearly. Patients may also feel stressed and depressed due to this major event in life. It is important for family members to show care and support to patients during this low phase. Patients can visit psychologists and learn relaxation techniques for a faster recovery. Activities like yoga and deep breathing exercises can significantly lower down the stress levels of patients. Patients must try to keep themselves engaged and spend quality time with family to overcome depression following a Throat Cancer Treatment.

Risks & Complications

Throat cancer surgery mainly involves the following risks and complications.

  • Lymph node problems
  • Fatigue
  • Anemia
  • Extreme pain
  • Infection
  • Bleeding
  • Dysphagia or swallowing difficulty
  • Xerostomia or dry mouth condition
  • Bowel obstruction

Patients must discuss regarding these risk and complications with respective oncologists prior signing the consent form for throat cancer surgery.

Advantages of Throat Cancer Treatment in India

India is the ultimate medical tourism destination for international patients seeking a quality treatment for cancer. Indian healthcare centers offer a wide range of cancer treatments and surgeries including mouth cancer treatment, tongue cancer treatment, lip cancer treatment, throat cancer treatment, and a lot more. Also, throat cancer treatment cost in India is extremely feasible as compared to any other western nation. IndianMedTrip is a prime and highly acknowledged medical facilitator in Indian country. Healthcare consultants at IndianMedTrip are closely associated with prominent hospitals and top-class oncologists in India. IndianMedTrip team assists patients throughout their medical trip and render best medical facilities, accommodation, food, and transportation, and follow-up care for ensuring beneficial outcomes. Therefore, International patients looking for finest throat cancer treatment in India can contact IndianMedTrip and avail cost-effective treatment packages.

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