Head and neck cancers are a broad category of cancers that occur in the head and neck region.

Types of head and neck cancers include:

  • Esthesioneuroblastoma
  • Floor of mouth cancer
  • Lip cancer
  • Mouth cancer
  • Nasal cavity cancer
  • Nasopharyngeal cancer
  • Paranasal sinus cancer
  • Parathyroid cancer
  • Salivary gland cancer
  • Soft palate cancer
  • Throat cancer
  • Thyroid cancer
  • Tongue cancer
  • Tonsil cancer

Treatment depends on the type, location and size of your cancer. Treatment for head and neck cancers often involves surgery, radiation therapy and chemotherapy. Rehabilitation specialists and other experts often work with people who experience hearing loss, difficulty eating or difficulty speaking as a result of head and neck cancers.

  • Collaboration. At Mayo Clinic, ear, nose and throat specialists (otorhinolaryngologists) work with oncologists, radiation oncologists, pathologists and radiologists to form a multidisciplinary team that provides whole-person care for people with head and neck cancers. Other professionals are included as needed.
  • Experience. Mayo Clinic doctors have extensive experience diagnosing and treating head and neck cancers. Your care team is prepared with the knowledge and resources to provide you with exactly the care you need.
  • Access to the latest. Mayo Clinic doctors have access to the latest diagnostic and treatment options. Examples include minimally invasive operations, such as transoral robotic surgery, and advanced radiation therapy techniques, such as intensity-modulated radiation therapy.
  • A full range of treatment options to consider. Mayo Clinic doctors will work with you to review all of your treatment options and choose the treatment that best suits your needs and goals. The range of treatments offered to people with head and neck cancers include surgery, radiation therapy and chemotherapy, as well as other treatments, including experimental therapies.
  • Rehabilitation services. At Mayo Clinic, your cancer treatment includes a personalized rehabilitation plan to help promote recovery and improve quality of life. Rehabilitation requires the expertise of a team of rehabilitation medicine specialists, such as dentists, prosthodontists, nurses, speech pathologists and physical therapists.
  • Comprehensive cancer center. Mayo Clinic Cancer Center meets strict standards for a National Cancer Institute comprehensive cancer center, which recognizes scientific excellence and a multidisciplinary approach to cancer prevention, diagnosis and treatment.

Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., and Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, Ariz., are ranked among the Best Hospitals for cancer by U.S. News & World Report. Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Fla., is ranked high performing for cancer by U.S. News & World Report.

At Mayo Clinic, we assemble a team of specialists who take the time to listen and thoroughly understand your health issues and concerns. We tailor the care you receive to your personal health care needs. You can trust our specialists to collaborate and offer you the best possible outcomes, safety and service.

Mayo Clinic is a not-for-profit medical institution that reinvests all earnings into improving medical practice, research and education. We're constantly involved in innovation and medical research, finding solutions to improve your care and quality of life. Your doctor or someone on your medical team is likely involved in research related to your condition.

Our patients tell us that the quality of their interactions, our attention to detail and the efficiency of their visits mean health care — and trusted answers — like they've never experienced.

Why Choose Mayo Clinic

What Sets Mayo Clinic Apart

Mayo Clinic works with hundreds of insurance companies and is an in-network provider for millions of people. In most cases, Mayo Clinic doesn't require a physician referral. Some insurers require referrals or may have additional requirements for certain medical care. All appointments are prioritized on the basis of medical need.

At Mayo Clinic, ear, nose and throat specialists (otorhinolaryngologists) work with oncologists, radiation oncologists, pathologists and radiologists to form a multidisciplinary team that provides whole-person care for people with head and neck cancers. Other professionals are included as needed.

For appointments or more information, call the Central Appointment Office at 800-446-2279 (toll-free) 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mountain Standard Time, Monday through Friday or complete an online appointment request form.

At Mayo Clinic, ear, nose and throat specialists (otorhinolaryngologists) work with oncologists, radiation oncologists, pathologists and radiologists to form a multidisciplinary team that provides whole-person care for people with head and neck cancers. Other professionals are included as needed.

For appointments or more information, call the Central Appointment Office at 904-953-0853 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Eastern time, Monday through Friday or complete an online appointment request form.

At Mayo Clinic, ear, nose and throat specialists (otorhinolaryngologists) work with oncologists, radiation oncologists, pathologists and radiologists to form a multidisciplinary team that provides whole-person care for people with head and neck cancers. Other professionals are included as needed.

For appointments or more information, call the Central Appointment Office at 507-538-3270 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Central time, Monday through Friday or complete an online appointment request form.

Doctors and scientists who specialize in ear, nose and throat disorders (otorhinolaryngologists) are studying new ways to diagnose and treat head and neck cancers. Learn more about otorhinolaryngology research.

Cancer research is conducted in coordination with the Mayo Clinic Cancer Center. The Mayo Clinic Cancer Center receives funding from the National Cancer Institute and is designated as a comprehensive cancer center — recognition for an institution's scientific excellence and multidisciplinary resources focused on cancer prevention, diagnosis and treatment.

See a list of publications by Mayo Clinic authors on head and neck cancers on PubMed, a service of the National Library of Medicine.

Nov. 06, 2014