Head and Neck Cancer

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Catholic Health Locations

Mount St. Mary's Hospital
5300 Military Road
Lewiston, NY 14092

Sisters of Charity Hospital
2157 Main Street
Buffalo, NY 14214

Treating Head and Neck Cancer

Head and neck cancer is cancer that arises in the:

  • nasal cavity,
  • sinuses,
  • lips,
  • mouth,
  • salivary glands,
  • throat (pharyngeal cancer and laryngeal cancer),
  • or larynx (voice box).

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.

Minimally Invasive Surgery for Throat Cancer

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).

“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.”