Base of Tongue Cancer Treatment
For early stage tumors of the base of tongue, either surgery or radiation may be used as primary therapy with equally good results. Treatment of the neck should be performed in patients with clinically positive necks regardless of the size of the primary tumor. For more advanced (T3) disease, radiation therapy may be considered. With T4 lesions, surgical therapy is probably more advantageous.
Tonsil, Tonsillar Pillar and Soft Palate Cancer Treatment
Like most other areas already discussed, treatment of this area for early stage disease can be adequately performed using either surgery or radiation. Due to the high risk of the disease spreading to nearby lymph nodes, treatment of the neck should be considered in all such patients. Advanced disease usually requires surgical intervention followed by postoperative radiation therapy. However, treatment primarily with radiation followed by surgical treatment of the neck also may be an option. Therapy should be tailored to the exact tumor (T) and node (N) stage of the patient.
Pharyngeal Wall Cancer Treatment
For early stage disease, either radiation or surgery may be contemplated. However, even early stage disease typically calls for bilateral (both sides) neck dissections. In advanced disease multimodality therapy should be considered.