Cancer of the larynx
It represents 5% of the total of cancers and 25% of cancers of the upper aerodigestive tract. It concerns a man in 9 out 10 cases, aged between 50 and 70 years. The nature of this tumour is represented by a squamous cell carcinoma in 98% of cases. Smoking and alcohol are risk factors in most cases.
The signs of this cancer may result in:
– speech disorders
– dysphagia (difficulty or pain while eating)
– a weight loss related to the dysphagia
– pain in the throat, neck, irradiation of pain towards the ears
– dyspnoea (difficulties breathing)
Once these signs have been observed, the patient will undergo disease staging with polyendoscopy in order to perform biopsies, CT-scan, dental assessment and a general examination. Once the doctor has the results of all these tests, he/she presents the patient’s record to the multi-disciplinary meeting to determine which is the most appropriate therapy. It is often decided to perform a total laryngectomy.