Navigation Links
Survey shows Americans may be missing direct route to head and neck cancer care

Alexandria, VA Tens of thousands of Americans are diagnosed annually with head and neck cancers, but many adults are unaware of doctors who specialize in treating these conditions, according to a recent survey by the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery (AAO-HNS), the association representing America's ear, nose and throat (ENT) doctors.

An estimated 35,000 Americans are diagnosed annually with cancers of the head and neck which include cancers of the oral cavity, larynx and pharynx and over 7,500 died from the disease last year. While most cases are linked to tobacco and excessive alcohol use, these cancers are increasingly affecting young, non-smokers with the human-papillomavirus, or HPV. Today, 25 percent of oral, head, and neck cancers 10,000 cases each year might be attributable to a strain of HPV.

When diagnosed very early, oral, head, and neck cancers can be treated without significant complications, increasing chances of survival. However, as the national survey found, many Americans are unaware that ENT doctors treat these cancers or are concerned about having ENT doctors treat these conditions, creating an awareness gap that could pose barriers to direct care. The survey findings include:

  • Almost 6 in 10 adults were most surprised to hear ENT doctors treat head and neck cancers, and almost 7 in 10 expressed concern about having an ENT doctor treat this condition.
  • While 56 percent of Americans would first go to an oncologist to discuss oral, head, and neck cancers, only 2 percent would initially approach an ENT doctor.
  • Only 4 percent of Americans recognize that ENT doctors treat cancers.

Otolaryngologists, also known as ENT doctors, differ from many other physicians in that they are trained in both medicine and surgery, which means they do not need to refer patients to other physicians when ear, nose, throat, or head/neck surgery is needed and, therefore, can offer comprehensive care for each individual patient. Otolaryngologists complete up to 12 years of medical and surgical education and training to practice and can diagnose and treat a variety of medical conditions, including head and neck cancers.

"Knowledge and awareness of a head and neck cancer specialist is important for fast and accurate diagnosis and treatment," said Daniel G. Deschler, MD, chair of the AAO-HNS Head and Neck Surgery/Oncology Committee, director of the division of Head and Neck Surgery at Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary and director of the Norman Knight Hyperbaric Medicine Center at Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary. "With thousands of Americans dying from or being diagnosed with cancers of the mouth, head, and neck each year, it is more important than ever that we educate the public about these conditions and their direct treatment options during Oral, Head, and Neck Cancer Awareness Week (OHANCAW)."

During the week-long OHANCAW campaign, free screenings are being offered at more than 150 medical centers around the country. To find out the closest free screening site, visit the Head and Neck Cancer Alliance (formerly the Yul Brynner Head and Neck Cancer Foundation) site at or

Knowing and recognizing the signs of head and neck cancer can save lives. Symptoms can include:

  • a mouth sore that bleeds easily and doesn't heal;
  • a lump or thickening anywhere in your mouth or neck;
  • soreness or swelling in the mouth that doesn't go away;
  • prolonged hoarseness of the voice;
  • a red or white patch on the tongue, gums, or cheeks that doesn't go away; and
  • trouble chewing, swallowing, or moving your tongue or jaw.

The most effective prevention remains reducing unhealthy behaviors like smoking, excessive alcohol consumption and use of chewing tobacco. Unfortunately, many Americans are not aware of how preventable these cancers can be if they make minor modifications to their lifestyles and get screened annually.


Contact: Jessica Mikulski
American Academy of Otolaryngology -- Head and Neck Surgery

Related medicine news :

1. Survey reveals disparities in skin cancer knowledge, protection among high school students
2. New Survey Shows Americans are Still Concerned About Food Safety, Yet Still Not Smart About What They Like to Eat
3. One of the Largest Post-WHI Physician Surveys Shows More Education is Needed: Patient Misinformation About Hormone Therapy Remains High
4. Hospitals Could Improve Outcomes for Patients and Save Millions According to Hill-Rom 10th Annual Pressure Ulcer Survey
5. Youth Drug Use at a Five Year Low, New Survey Shows
6. Survey From The Partnership and MetLife Foundation Reveals Important Role Todays Grandparents Play in Teens Lives
7. Parental surveys boost diagnosis abilities of pediatricians
8. National Survey Shows Employee Fears About Consumer-Driven Health Plans on Decline
9. JHA Releases 2007 U.S. Group Disability Mid-Year Market Survey Results
10. PA Health Department Survey Shows Impact of Income, Gender, Other Factors on Health and Access to Health Care
11. Launch of second European Cancer Research Funding survey
Post Your Comments:
(Date:6/25/2016)... Lewisville, TX (PRWEB) , ... June 25, 2016 , ... ... in the United States, named Dr. Sesan Ogunleye, as the Medical Director of its ... be the facility Medical Director of our new Mesquite location,” said Dr. James M. ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... On Friday, June 10, Van Mitchell, Secretary ... Work award to iHire in recognition of their exemplary accomplishments in worksite health promotion. ... Maryland Workplace Health & Wellness Symposium at the BWI Marriott in Linthicum Heights. iHire ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... Michigan (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... Those ... deal with these feelings, many turn to unhealthy avenues, such as drug or alcohol ... of Marne, Michigan, has released tools for healthy coping following a traumatic event. , ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... The ... in Dallas that it will receive two significant new grants to support its ... PHA marked its 25th anniversary by recognizing patients, medical professionals and scientists for ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Comfort Keepers® of San Diego, CA is excited to announce ... program to drive cancer patients to and from their cancer treatments. Comfort Keepers ... of life and ongoing independence. Getting to and from medical treatments is one ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... Revolutionary technology includes multi-speaker listening to conquer ... in advanced audiology and hearing aid technology, has today ... world,s first internet connected hearing aid that opens up ...      (Photo: ) , ... , TwinLink™ - the first dual communication ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... -- The vast majority of dialysis patients currently receive ... usually 3 times a week, with treatment times averaging ... equipment preparation and wait time.  This regimen can be ... who are elderly and frail.  Many elderly dialysis patients ... for some duration of time. Residents in ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... FRANKLIN, Tenn. , June 23, 2016 ... for automating, integrating and transforming the patient ... launch of several innovative new products and ... depth of its revenue cycle offerings. These ... establish more efficient workflows, remain compliant in ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: