Larynx Cancer Symptoms
The larynx, also called the voice box, is a 2-inch-long, tube-shaped organ in the throat. The main functions of larynx include control of breathing, protection of the trachea and sound production. Larynx is situated at the point where the upper tract splits into the trachea and the esophagus.
Larynx cancer or laryngeal cancer is the condition where the tissues in the larynx become cancerous or malignant.
The symptoms of larynx cancer depend mainly on the size and location of the tumor. Here are few common symptoms of larynx cancer:
- Hoarseness or huskiness
- Change in the voice-pitch
- Lump in the throat
- Persistent cough
- Pain in throat area
- Difficult in breathing
- Very difficult to swallow
- Noisy breathing
- Weight loss
- Bad breath
- Frequent chocking on the food
Facts and Statistics on Larynx Cancer:
- The Office of Rare Diseases (ORD) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has listed that this cancer is a rare disease.
- A disease is said so when it affects people less than 2,00,000 in the United States.
- 95 percent of larynx cancer in caused in the squamous cells which make up the inner walls of the larynx.
- Nearly 40,000 people are diagnosed with the squamous cell carcinoma every year in this country.
- When the gland cells spread all over the larynx develop cancer, it is called as adenocarcinoma.
- If cancer develops in the connective tissues of the larynx, it is called sarcomas. It is rare.
- Smoking and tobacco use are the primary reasons for getting this type of cancer.
- 95 percent of patients with this cancer are smokers.
- Men belonging to the lower socio-economic level and above 60 years are 4 times at higher risk of getting this disease.
- Smoking for more than 15 years can increase the risk of this cancer by 30 times.
- In 60 percent of cases, the cancer is diagnosed in the larynx, in 25 percent cases the disease spreads to near by sections too.
- In rest of the 5 percent cases, the disease is diagnosed to be in the advanced stage with organs like lungs getting affected.
- Verrucous carcinoma is a rare type of squamous cell carcinoma which usually arises in the glottic area.
- Patients suffering from this larynx cancer have a better survival rate than the more common squamous cell carcinoma.