Throat Cancer Symptoms
Symptoms of Throat Cancer
Throat cancer is a type of cancer that develops mostly in the larynx and pharynx, as well as other structures of the throat. In fact, we often use the term "throat cancer" to describe several different types of cancer that can affect the throat. For example, cancers in the larynx (voice box area) are referenced as laryngeal cancer, and cancers that grow from the pharynx (laryngopharynx, nasopharynx, oropharynx) are referred to as pharyngeal cancer.
The throat cancer occurs in many cases in people who smoke. Cigarette and pipe smoke, as well as heavy drinking are all the important risk factors for the throat cancer. Therefore, men are predominantly affected. The patients with throat cancer are often between 50 and 70 years old (64~66-year-old is the peak age).
The symptoms of throat cancer may vary based on tumor location and type, then you'd better keep an eye out for:
What are the symptoms of throat cancer?
Throat cancer symptoms and signs mainly including:
- Persistent hoarseness: a rough change in the sound of your voice (if continued progressive hoarseness, the first, early signs of throat cancer).
- Throat discomfort, foreign body sensation in throat, a feeling of lump in throat.
- Persistent cough, purulent bloody sputum with smelly odor, even coughing up blood.
- Having to clear the throat frequently
- A true lump in throat (signs of throat cancer)
- Sore throat (throat pain), aggravated by swallowing; The throat cancer pain may radiate to ear (ear pain) and head.
- Difficulty in swallowing.
- Abnormal breathing sounds: laryngeal stridor, difficulty in breathing, a sense of suffocation.
- Bad breath.
- There is no difference between symptoms of throat cancer in women and symptoms of throat cancer in men.
Throat cancer symptoms are often nonspecific and may be manifested as signs of a harmless disease or other cancers. The occurrence of a few symptoms may not explain the problem. However, the persistent symptoms, or more and more symptoms, or gradually severe symptoms, always tend to reveal the presence of cancer, especially the throat cancer.
Warning signs and early symptoms of throat cancer
In contrast to most other cancers, the throat cancer symptoms are often noticeable at an early stage. Particularly, when the cancer is located in the vocal cords of the glottis (glottic throat cancer), the throat cancer symptoms are marked by a persistent hoarseness. The hoarseness is an early warning sign and directly emanates from the vocal cords.
What does throat cancer feel like? Patients often feel a throat discomfort, or a foreign body sensation in the throat. A feeling of lump in throat is a very common symptom: It is estimated that this feeling emerges in more than half of the people at least once in their lifetime; Psychological and neurological disorders are responsible for the majority of cases; The "globus hystericus" was named for this type of feeling, characterized by only the feeling of lump in throat, not a true lump or tumor. However, throat cancer and tumor of laryngopharynx, can also cause a feeling of lump in throat; Moreover, this is a real lump. These throat discomfort are common "throat cancer symptoms", but more frequently in other benign diseases of the throat.
Throat cancer symptoms in advanced stage
Later, the patients also have a difficulty swallowing, and usually a frequent desire to clear his throat. Hoarseness, difficulty swallowing, or both simultaneously, that last longer without or with treatment over four weeks, should be suspected as "throat cancer symptoms" and must always be investigated by an ENT specialist.
With the development of throat cancer symptoms, the throat cancer causes a throat pain especially when swallowing. The pain sometimes also may radiate to the ear and head. Severe throat pain can hinder eating and swallowing.
Cough can also be common "throat cancer symptoms": Due to the foreign body or throat cancer stimulation, the patients usually have a dry, irritating cough. If the throat cancer becomes ulcerated and bleeding, therefore, the cough will be accompanied by blood stained sputum or purulent bloody sputum with smelly odor. A forced cough to clear the throat and a foreign body sensation may also be the evidence of a throat cancer.
A larger throat cancer can lead to a laryngeal stridor, which is a high-pitched crowing sound due to the glottic obstruction or airway obstruction caused by throat cancer. In late stage, the throat cancer symptoms can develop into difficulty breathing, or even suffocation.
Throat cancer symptoms in late stage
In the late stage, the throat cancer symptoms are manifested as fatigue, weakness, tiredness and rapid weight loss. These symptoms also appear in the late stage of all other cancers and chronic wasting disease.
Throat cancer metastasis symptoms
- Throat cancer spread to lymph nodes: Swollen lymph nodes in neck, can occur in early stage of throat cancer in some patients.
- A destruction to the thyroid cartilage, thus fauces swelling; with further development, soft tissue mass in the front of the neck.
- Slurring of speech (if the throat cancer affects the tongue).
- Throat cancer can spread to surrounding tissues, such as thyroid, trachea and esophagus.
- Throat cancer metastasis to the distant organs by way of the bloodstream, is rare. For example, throat cancer spread to lungs.
When to seek medical advice for throat cancer?
In recent years, there are more than 12,000 people a year diagnosed with throat cancer (cancer of larynx) in the United States. (Around 35,000 cases with the so-called "generalized throat cancers" - cancer of larynx and pharynx.)
Throat cancer typically causes a persistent hoarse voice, throat discomfort, foreign body sensation, sore throat, swollen lymph nodes in neck. How to clarify the causes and diagnose the throat cancer, is the doctor's responsibility and expertise. It is recommended that if you have the above-mentioned symptoms associated with throat cancer, you'd better make an appointment with your GP or find an ENT (ear nose throat) specialist.
How do you do for a possible throat cancer?
If symptomatic treatment has no effect in patients with these symptoms of suspected pharyngitis, and/or the hoarseness, sore throat, pharyngeal foreign body sensation, or even difficulty swallowing repeatedly last more than one month, it is recommended that you'd better go to hospital for investigations in your throat, pharynx, neck and esophagus as soon as possible.
The early detection of throat cancer is not difficult. If the hoarseness is persistent, and those symptoms are not improved even eating anti-inflammatory drugs, you should have an examination for the suspected throat cancer, especially for high-risk groups, who have a long-term smoking, drinking.
Furthermore, In most throat cancers, the prognosis is good and the survival rates are higher. Therefore, you do not have to worry about throat cancer. What you should do is in accordance with the above-mentioned symptoms, do go to your GP or ENT specialist and get a check up.
I should better get this diagnosed.
Remember that the first consideration is the inflammation, as well as some benign reason.
Relying solely on the symptoms, the disease can not be determined.
But to ignore the symptoms, may bring regret.
Symptoms can impress you to seek medical treatment in a timely manner.
Therefore, you can prevent life-threatening diseases in the beginning.
I think you may be unable to determine whether it is cancer, as well as the site of the lesion ( The lesion in the pharynx and larynx, esophagus, or just on the neck? ) You should contact a doctor, an ENT (ear,nose,throat) doctor. He will collect the patient's medical history, family history and symptoms. Then, check the patient's neck by touching and visual examination. For example, the larynx appearance and movement, touch friction sensitivity; Whether swollen lymph nodes on neck. Then, according to his judgment, he choses screening methods. If throat cancer is suspected, Laryngoscopy is must required. It is used in the laryngeal cancer and hypopharyngeal cancer. It can clearly determine whether there is cancer in the throat. Auxiliary examination: Sputum, bloody sputum examination, whether cancer cells are present. If the throat cancer is confirmed, CT or MR scans are necessary. They show the overall appearance of cancer development, distribution of swollen cervical lymph nodes, cancer development and invasion. So, contact a ENT doctor first, Laryngoscopy is must required for a suspected throat cancer. Throatcancersymptoms.net please help