Head and neck cancer is a significant public health issue with a high morbidity and fatality rate, says a well-known head and neck cancer surgeon in Kolkata. It is critical to raise awareness among doctors and the general public to control head and neck cancer and reduce the disease burden. The 27th of July is designated as World Head and Neck Cancer Day.
As a young and developing country, India has one of the greatest populations of people in their productive phase. However, they are more vulnerable to diseases that emerge as a result of their lifestyle choices.
For example, regardless of whether they reside in cities or the countryside, about half of all men in India consume alcohol, cigarettes, or both. These factors are a common cause of lung cancer or liver cirrhosis. They can, however, produce a seemingly less-known health hazard – head and neck cancer. Sexually transmitted infections (STI) caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV) can develop throat cancer, which is also a type of head and neck cancer.
One-third of India’s total cancer burden is due to head and neck cancer. Furthermore, India is home to nearly 60% of the world’s patients with head and neck cancer, which is predicted to treble by the end of the decade.
The hypopharynx, nasopharynx, tongue, lips, the floor of the mouth, hard palate, gum, and salivary glands are all affected by head and neck cancer. Human papillomavirus (HPV) and other pathogens can damage oropharyngeal locations such as the uvula, soft palate, lingual and palatine tonsils, base of tongue, oropharynx, and pharyngeal wall, says the best head and neck cancer doctor in Kolkata.
Men are more likely than women to get head and neck cancer.
Is there a link between head and neck cancer and lifestyle?
Tobacco usage, including smoking and chewing, and alcohol use are the leading causes of these cancers. People who use both alcohol and cigarettes are at a higher risk than those who only use one of these.
Human papillomavirus is responsible for a considerable and growing proportion of oropharyngeal malignancies. These can be avoided by using safe sexual practices.
Patients who have had treatment for head and neck cancers are more likely to develop new cancer, usually in the head, neck, oesophagus, or lungs. As a result, it is critical to get frequent medical check-ups, says the head and neck cancer surgeon in Kolkata.
You can reduce your chances of developing head and neck cancer by:
• Quitting smoking and usage of tobacco in any form
• Practicing safe sex and get vaccinated for HPV infection
• Avoid staying out in the sun for an extended amount of time
• Wear a protective face mask if exposed to toxic fumes and dust. Also, if you suspect you are at risk because of previous habits or environmental exposure, get examined to discover cancer before symptoms appear. The goal is to detect cancer at its most curable stage, says the best head and neck cancer doctor in Kolkata.