Larynx Cancer (cont.)
In this Article
- Throat cancer (larynx cancer) facts*
- What is the larynx?
- What is cancer?
- What are risk factors for larynx cancer?
- What are larynx cancer symptoms and signs?
- How is larynx cancer diagnosed?
- How is staging for throat cancer determined?
- What are treatment options for larynx cancer?
- Radiation Therapy
- Targeted Therapy
- How does a person get a second opinion after a throat cancer diagnosis?
- What can people with throat cancer eat?
- What is involved in rehabilitation after surgery for larynx cancer?
- What follow-up care is needed after treatment for throat cancer?
- What support is available for patients with larynx cancer?
- What research is being done on throat cancer? What about clinical trials?
- Find a local Oncologist in your town
Before starting treatment, you may want a second opinion about your diagnosis, stage of cancer, and treatment plan. Some people worry that the doctor will be offended if they ask for a second opinion. Usually the opposite is true. Most doctors welcome a second opinion. And many health insurance companies will pay for a second opinion if you or your doctor requests it. Some companies require a second opinion.
If you get a second opinion, the second doctor may agree with your first doctor's diagnosis and treatment plan. Or, the second doctor may suggest another approach. Either way, you'll have more information and perhaps a greater sense of control. You can feel more confident about the decisions you make, knowing that you've looked at all of your options.
It may take some time and effort to gather your medical records and see another doctor. The delay in starting treatment usually will not make treatment less effective. To make sure, you should discuss this delay with your doctor.
There are many ways to find a doctor for a second opinion. You can ask your doctor, a local or state medical society, a nearby hospital, or a medical school for names of specialists.
Also, you can get information about treatment centers near you from NCI's Cancer Information Service. Call 1-800-4-CANCER (1-800-422-6237). Or chat using LiveHelp, NCI's instant messaging service, at http://www.cancer.gov/ livehelp.
However, when you have laryngeal cancer, it may be difficult to eat. You may be uncomfortable or tired, and you may have trouble swallowing or not feel like eating. You also may have nausea, vomiting, dry mouth, constipation, or diarrhea from cancer treatment or pain medicine.
Tell your health care team if you're having any problems eating or drinking. Also tell your health care team if you have diarrhea, constipation, heartburn, gas, belly pain, nausea, or vomiting after eating. If you're losing weight, a dietitian can help you choose the foods and nutrition products that will meet your needs.
If there's a chance that swallowing will become too difficult for you, your dietitian and doctor may recommend another way for you to receive nutrition. For example, after surgery or during radiation therapy for laryngeal cancer, some people need a temporary feeding tube. A feeding tube is a flexible tube that is usually passed into the stomach through an incision in the abdomen. A liquid meal replacement product (such as Boost or Ensure) can be poured through the tube. These liquid products provide all of the calories, protein, and other nutrients you need until you are able to swallow again.
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