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How is stage one throat cancer treated?

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Quick Answer

Stage 1 throat cancer is usually treated by surgical removal of the cancer, which offers a success rate of more than 80 percent, according to Texas Oncology. Radiation therapy or a combination of surgery and radiation therapy are also sometimes used to fight early stage throat cancer.

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Full Answer

A multi-level treatment plan is generally recommended for throat cancer, with the ultimate goal of causing as little impact as possible on breathing, swallowing and talking, states Texas Oncology. In patients who are able to tolerate throat surgery, it is a common first-line treatment for the disease at this stage.

Radiation is also a valuable tool in fighting throat cancer, notes Texas Oncology. In one study, 100 percent of stage 1 throat cancer patients survived to the five-year mark when given radiation therapy or radiation therapy with surgery. Among stage 2 patients, 86 percent receiving radiation or a combination of radiation and surgery survived five years after diagnosis.

Radiation and surgery in combination is typically only used in larger throat cancers. Nonetheless, the combined approach of surgery and radiation is still useful in many patients. Some oncologists choose to also treat the lymph nodes in the neck when treating cancer of the throat, which has been shown to prevent recurrence of throat cancer in some patients, according to Texas Oncology.

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