What is Head and Neck Cancer?

The head and neck are a diverse region of the body that include the larynx, trachea, oral cavity, tongue, pharynx (throat), nasopharynx, salivary glands and thyroid. Tumors that develop in these areas are normally squamous cell carcinomas, which begin as cancerous growths in the squamous cells that make up most of the respiratory and digestive tracts. If detected early, head and neck cancer often may be treated successfully. These cancers may be particularly difficult for patients because they may impact speech and sight and cause disfigurement. Swallowing and the sense of smell also may be impacted.

Between three and five percent of cancers in the U.S. are head and neck cancers and are usually found more frequently in people older than 50. They are twice as common in men as in women.

Cancers We Treat


At Orlando Health UF Health Cancer Center, we treat both benign and malignant endocrine tumors.

Learn More

Nasal and Sinonasal Cavities

Several types of cancer may grow in the nasal and sinonasal cavities.

Learn More

Oral Cavity

Our oncologists will develop an individualized treatment plan based on the site and stage of your oral cancer and your overall health.

Learn More

Salivary Gland

Our specialized, multidisciplinary oncology team will develop a personalized plan to remove your tumor, whether it’s in the parotid, sublingual or submandibular glands.

Learn More


Skin cancers fall into two categories – melanoma or non-melanoma.

Learn More

Skull Base

The base of the skull lies behind the eyes and nose. Usually tumors in this area grow inside the skull, however sometimes they do grow outside.

Learn More


Throat cancer can occur in the larynx, pharynx, tonsils or lymph nodes. After a diagnosis, our multidisciplinary oncology team will develop a treatment plan that works best for your care.

Learn More