Mayo Clinic doctors are dedicated to providing you personalized, comprehensive and innovative care. They understand that cancers of the head and neck are unique to each individual. That's why Mayo Clinic experts use a multidisciplinary approach to both treat your cancer and preserve and restore function and appearance affected by the cancer.

To provide exactly the care you need, the Mayo Clinic Head and Neck Cancer Center houses a network of cancer experts working together to treat all types of head and neck and skull base cancers. These experts customize each person's treatment plan through close collaborations that may include surgeons, medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, pathologists, radiologists and other professionals.

Given that head and neck cancers often distort speech, swallowing, breathing and facial appearance, the surgical team includes both surgeons specialized in removing cancers and surgeons specialized in restoring complex function and cosmetic reconstruction.

The U.S. News & World Report ranks Mayo Clinic as America's best hospital and finds that Mayo's ear, nose and throat and cancer practices are some of the best in the country.

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A multidisciplinary approach to head and neck cancer

Daniel Ma, M.D., Department of Radiation Oncology, Mayo Clinic: All the things that we think of give us personality and individuality in life really reside in the head and neck. There have actually been studies done looking at patients who get treated at centers who do a high volume of head and neck cases. Patients who go to physicians who do this as a dedicated specialty tend to do better.

Eric Moore, M.D., Department of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, Mayo Clinic: We specialize in rare cancers so that they're common for us. You come and see me, but instantly, you see a whole team of people.

Katharine Price, M.D., Department of Medical Oncology, Mayo Clinic: Our multidisciplinary group, our collaboration, I would say, sets us apart from everybody else, and not to mention the fact that we just have all of the newest tools to do this.

Eric Moore, M.D.: The surgical robot allows you to get into tight spaces with what's called minimally invasive surgery.

Daniel Ma, M.D.: We have a very state-of-the-art proton unit able to deliver a very tight radiation field and avoid normal structures. We're probably one of the most aggressive centers in looking at dose de-escalation in terms of radiation for patients with HPV-related oral pharynx cancers.

Eric Moore, M.D.: 90% of the people with papillomavirus-induced tumor are cured by treatment. They can do very well with minimally invasive surgery and a decreased dose of targeted radiotherapy, and maybe targeted chemotherapy, and still have a high cure rate.