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Laryngeal Cancer: Treatments and Services

There are various treatment options for those who have laryngeal cancer. The three standard options are surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy.

Surgery is a common treatment method for all stages of laryngeal cancer and requires a doctor to remove the cancer during an operation. Some of the surgeries that may be performed include:

  • Cordectomy - removes only the vocal cords
  • Supraglottic laryngectomy - removes only the supraglottis
  • Hemilaryngectomy - removes only half of the larynx (voice box) and saves the voice
  • Partial laryngectomy - removes part of the larynx and keeps patient's ability to speak
  • Total laryngectomy - removes entire larynx; a hole is made in the neck and allows the patient to breathe
  • Thyroidectomy - removes part of the thyroid gland
  • Laser surgery - removes tissue lesions (such as tumors) by using a laser as a knife

Radiation Therapy uses high energy beams to treat cancer from within the body using a procedure called brachytherapy (internal radiation), or from outside the body using external radiation. Radiation therapy is most effective when the patient has quit smoking before treatment begins.

Chemotherapy uses drugs to treat cancer cells by either killing them or stopping the division process. Chemotherapy drugs are usually injected or taken by mouth and travel throughout the body to treat cancer cells.

 
 

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