About Head and Neck Cancer
Written by: SERO Board-Certified Physicians
Head and neck cancer includes any cancer arising in the nasal cavity, sinuses, lips, mouth, throat, salivary glands or thyroid gland. Tobacco and alcohol use are the leading cause of mouth and throat cancer. However, there has been a recent rise in the incidence of oropharyngeal (base of tongue and tonsil) carcinoma in younger adults related to human papillomavirus, which is a highly prevalent sexually transmitted viral infection.
What To Know
Human papillomavirus is a known risk factor in developing head and neck cancer, specifically oropharyngeal cancers. There are over 100 types of HPV, but HPV types 16 and 18 are most often associated with oropharyngeal cancers. The HPV vaccine, Gardasil, may help reduce the risk of head and neck cancer in the future.