Expert care for head and neck cancer
The unique challenges of head and neck cancers call for the most seasoned specialists, advanced surgical procedures, and medical treatment. At Maimonides, we have them all. Using the most innovative and minimally invasive techniques available, we provide the best chances for cure, while preserving every individual’s quality of life and function.
Our success comes from a multidisciplinary team approach to patient-centered care. Renowned head and neck surgeons, radiation and medical oncologists, plastic surgeons, and speech and swallowing therapists are among the clinicians who work together to create the right treatment plan for you. We treat all head and neck cancers, including those of the oral cavity, larynx, throat, thyroid, parathyroid, nasal cavity and paranasal sinuses, and salivary glands.
Diagnosing head and neck cancers
With early diagnosis, many head and neck cancers are curable. We begin with a thorough head and neck examination to feel for lumps in the neck, mouth, or throat. To confirm and locate a tumor, we conduct one or more imaging studies using the latest magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), computed tomography (CT), or positron emission tomography (PET) technology. Finally, we perform a biopsy to determine if a tumor is malignant or benign.
Treatment of head and neck cancers
Treatment of head and neck tumors may involve surgery, radiation, chemotherapy, or any combination of these treatment options:
- Surgery – To remove a tumor might be the one treatment step. Our state-of-the-art surgical suite features up-to-the-minute technology, including imaging equipment for intraoperative guidance. We recommend surgery only when necessary and always consider minimally invasive techniques to minimize trauma and reduce recovery time and hospital stays. Whenever possible we promote treatment alternatives involving radiation and chemotherapy to help patients maintain the best quality of life
- Radiation therapy – Is often recommended. The radiation therapy unit at Maimonides has received national recognition for safety and accuracy and features intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT), image-guided radiation therapy (IGRT), 3D conformal radiotherapy (3D-CRT), and high-dose-rate remote after loading brachytherapy, which all pinpoint tumors and spare healthy tissue. We also offer:
- External beam radiation therapy – A series of daily outpatient treatments
- Brachytherapy (internal radiation therapy) – Surgical implantation of radioactive material into a tumor or surrounding tissue
- Chemotherapy – May accompany radiation, especially for cancers that do not respond to surgery alone. Our medical oncology team develops individualized treatments, all delivered in our modern infusion suite. Our team is also involved in the latest clinical trials, and our patients have access to therapies that are not widely available elsewhere