Head & Neck Cancer Symptoms & Signs
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What Are the Symptoms of Head and Neck Cancer?
The ears, nose and throat are the most common areas affected by head and neck cancers. The symptoms may depend on where the cancer develops and how it spreads.
For example, tumors in the larynx or pharynx may be felt as a lump in the throat. Cancer in the mouth may cause sores in the mouth or swelling of the jaw.
In addition to physical signs of head and neck cancer, like tumors, these cancers often cause symptoms that are similar to less serious conditions, like the common cold. Changes in voice, headaches, sore throat or a cough may be symptoms of throat cancers. Pain or ringing in the ears may also accompany certain head and neck cancers.
Some common head and neck cancer symptoms include:
- A lump in the nose, neck or throat
- A persistent sore throat
- Trouble swallowing (dysphagia)
- Unexplained weight loss
- Frequent coughing
- Change in voice or hoarseness
- Ear pain or trouble hearing
NOTE: These symptoms may be attributed to a number of conditions other than cancer, such as an infection or other illness. It is important to consult with a medical professional for an accurate diagnosis.
Understanding Symptoms of Head & Neck Cancers
Many symptoms of head and neck cancer may appear harmless at first. However, unlike a common cold, the symptoms do not go away. If you have a sore throat or and cough that persists longer than a couple of weeks, you should schedule an appointment with your doctor.
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