What are head and neck cancers?

Although brain cancer is technically in the head, we consider it as a separate category in order to provide more focused and expert treatment. Head and neck cancers include all other cancers of the head and neck area, including laryngeal (luh-RIN-jee-ul), lip/oral, oropharyngeal (OR-oh-fuh-RIN-jee-ul), parathyroid (PAYR-uh-THY-royd) and thyroid (THY-royd) cancer. We also treat non-cancerous or cancerous tumors of the throat, nose, sinuses, and skull base, as well as acoustic neuroma, a tumor affecting the inner ear.

Symptoms for these types of cancers can vary depending on the location, especially in the case of skull base tumors. It is known that abusing tobacco and alcohol can increase the risk of certain head and neck cancers. Exposure to radiation can also increase the likelihood of thyroid cancer and salivary gland cancer.

Our expert approach to head and neck cancers

Due to the varied nature of these disorders, the team that treats head and neck cancers at Phelps is composed of specialists from varied disciplines. Our doctors, surgeons, and other team members will work together to create a unique plan for you based on your particular diagnosis, health history, and personal needs.

According to the Head and Neck Cancer Alliance, at least 75% of head and neck cancers are caused by smoking, chewing tobacco, and alcohol abuse.

Cancer care is not one-size-fits-all and our specialists will be with you every step of the way, using the most advanced therapies available to help you beat cancer with the least negative effect on your body. As part of the Northwell Health family, Phelps has access to vast clinical resources and the full support of the Center for Head and Neck Oncology. Some of the advanced treatments provided at the Cancer Institute include:

We will make every effort to provide convenient and local treatment options, so you can focus on your battle. Our doctors focus on a collaborative approach, and will always consult with the most qualified specialists both inside and outside of the Phelps system, including neuroradiologists, neuropathologists, neurosurgeons, otolaryngologists, endocrinologists, and reconstructive surgeons.

Our team at Phelps is dedicated to ensuring you get the treatment you need in the comfort of a warm and caring environment. Your oncologist will explain all of your treatment options and create a plan for your specific needs and goals. You’ll work closely with a dedicated team of specialists in medical oncology, surgical oncology, and radiation oncology who will collaborate to ensure seamless coordination of your care. The doctors providing your treatment will meet regularly as a team to share ideas and review your care plan, because every head and neck cancer diagnosis is unique.

woman getting a neck exam

Call the Cancer Institute for more information.

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As a testament to our quality of care, we have been designated as a Community Cancer Program by the Commission on Cancer.

Learn more about the symptoms and risk factors for head and neck cancers.

Focused on the future of cancer care
Northwell Health has one of the largest cancer programs in the New York metro area.
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We’re here to support you on every step of your journey

We know that every patient’s cancer diagnosis and journey is unique. We offer a variety of coordinated support services right here at Phelps Hospital. Our support program includes oncology nurse navigators, oncology nutritionists, social workers, and others who are dedicated to coordinating your care and ensuring your needs are met. Our unique hospitality team will make sure you have a comfortable stay while you’re with us.

Explore the support program

As a part of the Northwell Health system, we have access to a network of research laboratories and hospitals performing cutting-edge cancer trials. For more information, please consult your doctor.

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