Head and neck cancer is cancer that arises in the:
Using tobacco or alcohol increases your risk. If found early, these cancers are often curable.
If you are diagnosed with head and neck cancer, treatment options may include surgery, radiation and chemotherapy.
Oral cancer tends to affect otherwise healthy people in their 20s through 50s and is often in an advanced stage when diagnosed.
Standard surgical approaches, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy are only moderately successful in treating oral cancer, and traditional surgery can involve splitting the jawbone open to fully access and remove malignancies. This approach can lead to a lengthy hospital stay, difficulty swallowing, impaired speech, and extended feedings via a gastric tube.
Fortunately, there is a minimally invasive treatment option for these conditions – Transoral Robotic Surgery (TORS). Sisters of Charity Hospital is one of only a handful of hospitals across the country offering this state-of-the-art procedure.
Saurin Popat, M.D., an Ear, Nose and Throat specialist with Catholic Health, performed the area’s first vendor-approved TORS procedure in 2011, when he successfully removed an enlarged, non-cancerous tumor of the supraglottic larynx (voice box above the level of the vocal cords).
Dr. Popat performed the delicate surgery through the patient’s mouth resulting in no visible incisions. The robotic procedure offers an excellent alternative to traditional “open” surgery and reduces the risk of complications.
“Patients who are diagnosed with early to moderate stage throat cancer are the best candidates for TORS,” said Dr. Popat. “It offers minimal pain and discomfort, no tracheotomy, low risk of complications, a shorter hospital stay and no visible scarring or disfigurement.”
If you have been diagnosed with head and neck cancer and would like to be treated at Catholic Health, search our physician directory for physicians who specialize in Otolaryngology.