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Thread: Cancer of the larynx

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    Thumbs up Cancer of the larynx

    Cancer of the larynx

    What is the larynx?

    The larynx is an organ at the front of your neck. It is also called the voice box. It is about 2 inches long and 2 inches wide. It is above the windpipe (trachea). Below and behind the larynx is the esophagus.

    The larynx has two bands of muscle that form the vocal cords. The cartilage at the front of the larynx is sometimes called the Adam's apple.

    The larynx has three main parts:
    The top part of the larynx is the supraglottis.
    The glottis is in the middle. Your vocal cords are in the glottis.
    The subglottis is at the bottom. The subglottis connects to the windpipe.
    The larynx plays a role in breathing, swallowing, and talking. The larynx acts like a valve over the windpipe. The valve opens and closes to allow breathing, swallowing, and speaking:
    Breathing: When you breathe, the vocal cords relax and open. When you hold your breath, the vocal cords shut tightly.
    Swallowing: The larynx protects the windpipe. When you swallow, a flap called the epiglottis covers the opening of your larynx to keep food out of your lungs. The food passes through the esophagus on its way from your mouth to your stomach.
    Talking: The larynx produces the sound of your voice. When you talk, your vocal cords tighten and move closer together. Air from your lungs is forced between them and makes them vibrate. This makes the sound of your voice. Your tongue, lips, and teeth form this sound into words.

    What is cancer of the larynx?

    Cancer of the larynx is caused by changes in the lining of the larynx due to long-standing irritation - usually by cigarette smoke.

    Today, it is largely a male disease, with men accounting for 80 per cent of the 2000 cases that occur each year in England and Wales. It is seldom seen in people who have never smoked.
    What are the symptoms of cancer of the larynx?

    Cancer of the larynx usually occurs in people aged over 60.

    Usually, the first symptom is hoarseness, so if you have been hoarse for more than four weeks it is important to consult your doctor.

    Less often this is accompanied by throat pain, ear pain or difficulty in swallowing. Fortunately, cancer of the larynx is a rare disease. However, it is important to treat it as early as possible, because this can often lead to a full recovery. For this reason, your doctor is likely to refer you to a specialist.
    How is cancer of the larynx diagnosed?

    At the clinic, the specialist will look at the vocal cords with a special mirror or telescope. It may be necessary to later re-examine the throat under anaesthetic so that specimens of tissue can be taken for further examination.
    How is cancer of the larynx treated?

    Cancer of the larynx is treated with radiotherapy. This may temporarily affect ability to swallow and the voice, but usually speech will return to normal afterwards. This treatment usually results in a cure if it is carried out early enough.

    In more advanced cases the larynx has to be removed. After the operation, you will need to breathe through a hole on the front of the throat (tracheostomy).
    Future prospects

    After an operation to remove the larynx, normal speech is no longer possible because the vocal cords have been removed. However, a speech therapist can teach you to speak in another way by using air from the oesophagus or throat (oesophageal speech).

    A voice prosthesis that connects the windpipe to the throat via a one-way valve in order to simulate a voice can be fitted at the time of the surgery.
    Larynx Cancer At A Glance
    • The larynx is the voice box located at the top of the windpipe (trachea).
    • Cancer of the larynx occurs most often in people over the age of 55 years.
    • People who stop smoking can greatly reduce their risk of cancer of the larynx.
    • Painless hoarseness can be a symptom of cancer of the larynx.
    • The larynx can be examined with a viewing tube called a laryngoscope.
    • Treatment of cancer of the larynx depends on the location and size of the tumor as well as the age and health of the patient.
    • Cancer of the larynx is usually treated with radiation therapy or surgery. Chemotherapy can also be used for cancers that have spread.

    In-depth Details:

    What is the larynx?
    What is cancer?
    Who is at risk for larynx cancer?
    What are symptoms of larynx cancer?
    How is larynx cancer diagnosed?
    What are treatment options for larynx cancer?
    o Methods of treatment
    o Patient Discussions: Larynx Cancer - Describe Your Experience
    What are the side effects of treatment for larynx cancer?
    What is involved in rehabilitation after surgery for larynx cancer?
    What happens after treatment for larynx cancer?
    What support is available for patients with larynx cancer?
    What resources are available to patients with larynx cancer and their families?
    Larynx Cancer At A Glance

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    [HIDE] - document sharing - download Larynx Cancer.pdf


    Carcinoma of larynx -Powerpoint -
    Introduction; Aetiology; Classification and staging; Supraglottic, glottic and subglottic cancer.




    Cancer Lecture.ppt


    Last edited by trimurtulu; 01-18-2009 at 08:50 PM.

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    thanks a lot

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    thanks a lot.

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