Larynx Cancer Treatments
Northwestern Medicine offers a team-based approach to larynx cancer treatment. Patients are evaluated by head and neck surgeons, laryngologists, speech and swallowing pathologists, radiation oncologists and medical oncologists. Treatment plans are developed based upon the patient's type of cancer, stage of disease and coexisting medical conditions. Treatment options include:
- Surgery (partial laryngectomy)
- Radiation therapy
A total removal of the voice box is only necessary when the cancer is quite advanced. In such cases, nonsurgical treatment with a combination of chemotherapy and radiation therapy is an option for saving the patient's voice box.
Surgery for larynx cancer can be a minimally invasive removal of a small part of the voice box affected by cancer with the help of a laser. This operation is best suited for more limited cancers. Other specialized techniques of partial laryngectomy are also utilized when appropriate with the goal of saving the patient's voice box.
How curable is larynx cancer?
Prognosis for laryngeal cancer depends on many factors including stage (initial extent of cancer) at which the patient presents, general medical health, and several other pathologic factors. Most importantly, access to highly specialized centers focusing on cancer care such as the Northwestern Medicine Head and Neck Program, has been repeatedly shown to improve survival outcomes for patients with cancer.