Treatment for cancers of the head and neck will depend on your type and stage of cancer, as well as your medical history and personal preferences for treatment.1
- Surgery – is the most common treatment for head and neck cancers of all stages. In some cases reconstructive surgery (plastic surgery) may be required to help rebuild cancerous tissue and bone that was removed. 1
- Some surgeries that impact on the ability to chew and swallow may result in the need of a gastrotomy tube (a tube that inserted into your stomach for feeding to ensure you receive optimal nutrition post-surgery).1
- Radiation therapy – may be used instead of or after surgery to cure the cancer or to help prevent the cancer from returning. Radiation therapy can help manage symptoms, such as pain or bleeding, in more advanced cases. 1 If you receive radiation therapy for your head and neck cancer, you may also need an immobilisation device such as a mask to ensure you stay as still as possible throughout your treatment. To learn more about immobilisation masks and how they are made ahead of your treatment, click here.
- Chemotherapy – can be used alongside radiotherapy to help enhance treatment, or help to control symptoms when a cancer has spread.1
- Targeted and Immune therapies – use specific drugs aimed to destroy cancer cells, while leaving healthy cells unharmed.1