If you have been diagnosed with throat cancer, it is essential to understand what the future may hold for your health and your life.
In the US, it has been estimated that there are more than 400,000 new cases of throat cancer per year, and nearly 50,000 deaths occur annually. Most people diagnosed with the disease have had some form of tobacco use.
There is a misconception that all smokers risk developing throat cancer more than nonsmokers. Still, a study published in JAMA Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery found that tobacco use was not associated with a higher cancer risk.
The study included data from the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results database and found that smoking was not a significant predictor of laryngeal, oropharyngeal, hypopharyngeal, or oral cavity cancer.
A link exists between having an early diagnosis of throat cancer and decreased survival rates. If you have an advanced stage of throat cancer, you have less than three months to live. However, there is no reason to panic. Instead, you should find a way to work on your physical and emotional healing, as you will have many years left to live.
Throat cancer survival rates
Researchers from the University of Maryland School of Medicine examined more than 25 years of data on patients treated for tongue, larynx, or hypopharynx cancer.
They found that patients with the most minor, severe forms of cancer were likely to survive for more than five years. However, patients with the most severe form of cancer were unlikely to survive the past two years.
In other words, those with throat cancer have a much better chance of surviving for five years if they have a less severe form of cancer but a much better chance of surviving for less than two years if they have a more severe form of cancer.
Treatment options for throat cancer
Most people are familiar with surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy treatments. While these therapies are effective, they can be painful and have severe side effects.
Fortunately, we now have a new option that is less invasive and can provide better results than traditional treatment methods. Laser therapy is a highly effective treatment option for people with pharynx cancer.
A study published in Laryngoscope found that laser therapy is effective for laryngeal cancer. The patients were treated with laser therapy and were compared to a control group that underwent chemotherapy.
When do I need to see my doctor?
You may think you know what to do when you notice a sore throat. However, visiting a physician as soon as possible is essential when diagnosed with throat cancer.
While the symptoms of throat cancer are similar to those of other throat infections, such as strep throat and the flu, doctors can distinguish between the two.
For example, throat cancer can cause pain and difficulty swallowing, whereas a cold can cause throat pain but usually doesn’t affect your eating ability.
If you suspect throat cancer, your doctor should take a tissue sample to confirm the diagnosis.
If you’re experiencing throat pain, you may need a throat biopsy for diagnosis. A biopsy is a medical procedure that involves taking a small piece of tissue for testing. A biopsy may be done to diagnose throat cancer, determine if you have an infection, or determine if you have a precancerous growth. Throat Cancer Symptoms: The most common symptom of throat cancer is a sore that won’t heal or a lump in the neck. Some other symptoms of throat cancer include:
What are the treatments for throat cancer?
Many people assume that you must die within a year if you have a cancer diagnosis. But that’s not necessarily the case. The overall survival rate for throat cancer patients is quite good.
While many treatment options are available, most people surgically remove the affected area.
Several types of surgery can be performed to remove cancer. One of the most common is called a laryngectomy, which involves removing the larynx (voice box).
Another option is a partial laryngectomy, which removes only part of the larynx.
Frequently Asked Questions About Life Expectancy.
Q: How long would you take before your voice changes?
A: I’m unsure how long it will take before my voice changes. However, if it doesn’t change, it might be several years before I would notice it.
Q: Do you have any questions about your condition?
A: I do have a few questions about my throat cancer. The most important is how I should eat and what foods are safe. I want to know what I can eat to live my everyday life and be healthy again.
Q: What has been the most challenging part of your treatment?
Top myths about Life Expectancy
1. A person with throat cancer will have a life expectancy of less than one year.
2. The person will die in a matter of weeks.
3. The person will not be able to eat and will lose weight rapidly.
4. The person’s speech will be slurred, unable to speak clearly, and having difficulty chewing food.
As many people know, there are treatments for throat cancer. The most common treatment for throat cancer is radiation therapy. Radiation therapy aims to shrink the tumor and then destroy the remaining cells.
The prognosis after treatment depends on the type of cancer, the stage of the disease, and the person’s age. The median survival time after diagnosis is about ten months.