When detected early, these types of cancer are highly curable -- often with either surgery or radiation therapy alone. More advanced cancers are generally treated with various combinations of treatment options.
Removes the tumor, affected parts of the oral cavity, lymph nodes, and surrounding tissues, depending on the type and size of the tumor and whether the tumor has spread. Our surgeons use a wide range of surgical approaches, including laser surgery, which can reduce bleeding. They also use robotic tools to increase their precision and visualization and allow them to remove hard-to-reach tumors. You may be able to participate in an experimental procedure, now being tested in clinical trials, that is evaluating the benefits of removing oral cancers using robotic tools through the mouth, rather than surgically through the neck.
MRI and CT imaging technology pinpoints the precise location of the tumor, and we target it with beams of high-energy X-rays that destroy cancer cells. This image-guided approach, used before and after surgery, minimizes damage to surrounding healthy tissue.
A relatively new treatment option, immunotherapy takes advantage of a person's own immune system to help kill cancer cells. There are several FDA-approved options that can be delivered via oral medications or IV infusion. Depending on each person's cancer type and stage, treatment history, and overall health, immunotherapy may be prescribed alone or in combination with another type of therapy, such as chemotherapy.
Another newer form of treatment, targeted therapy can help stop or slow the growth or spread of cancer by targeting specific aspects of your tumor's biology. Targeted therapies may be delivered in pill form or through onsite IV infusion and are often used in combination with another treatment like chemotherapy or radiation.
Medicines that kill cancer cells or stop them from growing are used to treat oral cancers, both before and after surgery. Our medical oncologists consider your specific type of tumor and assess the risks versus benefits before recommending chemotherapy as part of your personalized treatment plan. We routinely combine the newest chemotherapy drugs with standard drug regimens to achieve a better response, fewer side effects, and improved quality of life.