What are the types of throat cancer?Nasopharyngeal Cancer forms in the nasopharynx, which is the upper portion of the pharynx right behind the nose. This type of throat cancer is the only squamous cell head and neck cancer that researchers have not linked to excessive tobacco use or moderate alcohol consumption. It does, however, have its own set of unique risk factors including ethnic background and exposure to the Epstein-Barr virus.
Oropharyngeal Cancer cells grow in the middle portion of the pharynx behind the mouth, but this cancer also impacts the soft palate, sides and back of the throat, and the base of the tongue. Smoking and exposure to the Human Papillomavirus (HPV) put patients at a greater risk for contracting this disease.
Hypopharyngeal cancer cells form in the tissue of the hypopharynx and/or the swallowing passages. Increased risk for hypopharyngeal cancer has been linked to eating a diet without the proper nutrients in it as well as having Plummer-Vinson Syndrome.
As with other cancers, throat cancers (which can often initially go undetected because early signs are difficult to pinpoint) have specific types. Additionally, cancer cells can spread to surrounding tissues, cartilage, bones or other parts of the body.
Prognosis and treatment options vary depending on each person’s own genetic makeup, location of the cancer cells and the stage of the cancer.