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Cancer Health Center

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Hypopharyngeal Cancer Treatment (PDQ®): Treatment - Health Professional Information [NCI] - Stage I Hypopharyngeal Cancer

Except for the very early T1 cancers of this region, treatment has been primarily surgery, usually followed with postoperative radiation therapy. Because these tumors are clinically silent until they reach advanced stages, it is very unusual to diagnose them at the T1 N0 stage. In most available retrospective reviews, T1 N0 cases represent only 1% to 2% of all patients seen. In the case of exophytic T1 N0 lesions, radiation therapy alone may be considered for treatment.[1,2]

Standard treatment options:

Recommended Related to Cancer

General Information About Esophageal Cancer

Incidence and Mortality Estimated new cases and deaths from esophageal cancer in the United States in 2014:[1] New cases: 18,170. Deaths: 15,450. The incidence of esophageal cancer has risen in recent decades, coinciding with a shift in histologic type and primary tumor location.[2,3] Adenocarcinoma of the esophagus is now more prevalent than squamous cell carcinoma in the United States and western Europe, with most tumors located in the distal esophagus. The cause for the rising...

Read the General Information About Esophageal Cancer article > >

  • Laryngopharyngectomy and neck dissection has been the most frequently used therapy for hypopharyngeal cancers. In very selected cases of pyriform sinus cancers, that is, those arising in the upper lateral wall, a partial laryngopharyngectomy may be successfully used to preserve vocal function. All groups who use radiation advocate high-dose treatment to the primary site and to both sides of the neck to include the retropharyngeal and lateral cervical nodes.[1]

Current Clinical Trials

Check for U.S. clinical trials from NCI's list of cancer clinical trials that are now accepting patients with stage I hypopharyngeal cancer. The list of clinical trials can be further narrowed by location, drug, intervention, and other criteria.

General information about clinical trials is also available from the NCI Web site.


  1. Mendenhall WM, Parsons JT, Devine JW, et al.: Squamous cell carcinoma of the pyriform sinus treated with surgery and/or radiotherapy. Head Neck Surg 10 (2): 88-92, 1987 Nov-Dec.
  2. Murthy AK, Galinsky D, Hendrickson FR: Hypopharynx. In: Laramore GE, ed.: Radiation Therapy of Head and Neck Cancer. Berlin: Springer-Verlag, 1989, pp 107-24.

    This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http:// cancer .gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.

    WebMD Public Information from the National Cancer Institute

    Last Updated: 8/, 015
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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