Head and neck cancer

Dr. Ingrid Breuskin

+33 (0)1 42 11 56 88

Reconstructive surgery
+33 (0)1 42 11 65 36

Tél. : +33 (0)1 42 11 46 05


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Head and neck cancer

Treatment of benign Head and Neck tumours and cancers

The multidisciplinary team of the Gustave Roussy ENT / Head and Neck Committee has a national and international reputation in the comprehensive management of patients with benign or malignant ENT conditions and those affecting head and neck territory. This incorporates diagnosis, investigation, comprehensive treatment, rehabilitation and follow-up.
It is responsible for the treatment of patients with the following tumours:  

  • Buccal cavity (tongue, mandible, buccal floor, cheek, palate and lips)
  • Oropharynx (tonsils, soft palate, base of tongue and epiglottic vallecula)
  • Larynx (vocal cords, epiglottis, vestibular ligaments and the sub-glottis)
  • Hypopharynx (piriform sinus, posterior wall, retrocricoarytenoid region and upper oesophageal sphincter)
  • Facial skeleton (nose; nasal cavity; ethmoid, maxillary and sphenoid sinuses; base of the skull; orbit; and the pterygo-maxillary and infratemporal fossae)
  • Nasopharynx
  • Salivary glands (parotid, submandibular, sublingual and accessory salivary glands)

The commonest ENT cancers are squamous cell lesions which arise in the oral mucosa and the mucosa of the tonsils, the pharynx or the larynx (vocal cords). Their development is sometimes preceded by a pre-malignant lesion. These cancers are usually secondary to consumption of alcohol and tobacco. However, increasingly frequently we are seeing patients without a history of such consumption, in whom the cancer may result from the presence of  (as for cancer of the uterine cervix).

National referral centre for rare ENT / head and neck tumours

The other types of upper airways cancer are rarer and are thus subject to highly specialised treatment at Gustave Roussy:

  • adenocarcinoma and other tumour types, in particular those arising in the salivary glands,   
  • lymphomas
  • sarcomas

Finally, we manage many patients with benign tumours such as those of the salivary glands, in particular the parotids, and patients with precancerous lesions, especially in the buccal cavity.  
A multidisciplinary approach is possible because the Institute houses all the specialties which work together to provide traditional and innovatory care. These include surgery, radiotherapy, chemotherapy, medical imaging, interventional radiology, the Maxillo-Facial Prosthetic Laboratory, anaesthetics and intensive care, as well as the support services (speech therapy, pain relief, nutrition, addiction services and oncopsychology). The high degree of specialisation means that technical measures are applied to these conditions using high quality materials and an expertise which is recognised in national classification tables.  

Gustave Roussy was designated by the National Institute of Cancer (INCa) as the French  referral centre for rare ENT / Head and Neck tumours within the REFCOR network for:

  • Sarcomas
  • Salivary gland cancer and other rare and very rare diagnoses
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