What is Head & neck cancer?

Head and neck cancer occurs when abnormal cells in the head or neck grow in an uncontrolled way. These cancers usually begin in the squamous cells that line the inside of the mouth, nose and throat.

Head and neck cancer is 1 of the 10 most common cancers in both men and women in Australia.

  • Head and neck cancer statistics

    Head and neck cancer statistics

    Head and neck cancer is 1 of the 10 most common cancers in both men and women in Australia.

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  • Know the risk factors

    Know the risk factors

    Some risk factors are modifiable, such as lifestyle or environmental risk factors, and others cannot be modified, such as inherited factors or whether someone in the family has had cancer.

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  • Head and neck cancer symptoms

    Head and neck cancer symptoms

    Some of the most common symptoms of head and neck cancer are pain in the mouth, upper teeth, throat, neck, face or chin. A lump or sore that does not go away, bleeding in the mouth or through the nose and a white or red patch on the gums, tongue or lining of the mouth.

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  • How is head and neck cancer diagnosed?

    How is head and neck cancer diagnosed?

    You might have a number of tests to investigate your symptoms and confirm a diagnosis of head and neck cancer. The more complex tests may be best carried out in conjunction with a dedicated head and neck cancer service.

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  • Treatment options

    Treatment options

    Treatment and care of people with cancer is usually provided by a team of health professionals, both medical and allied health, called a multidisciplinary team.

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  • Finding support

    Finding support

    You might feel overwhelmed, scared, anxious or upset if you have been diagnosed with cancer – these are all normal feelings.

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  • Research & clinical trials

    Research & clinical trials

    Research is ongoing to find new ways to diagnose and treat different types of cancer.

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  • Health professionals

    Health professionals

    Information and Clinical Guidelines for Health professionals.

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