Head & Neck Cancer

Choosing the right team to treat head and neck cancer is important. Lake Health/University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center’s Head and Neck Cancer team is led by Medical Director Dr. Fredrick Barton and includes ENT surgeons, radiation oncologists, medical oncologists, and dentists.

“Head and Neck Cancer” is a phrase used to refer to a group of cancers involving structures of the face, mouth, throat, sinuses, or salivary glands. They account for about 4% of all cancers in the United States, and are typically more common among men than among women, and are diagnosed more often among adults over age 50 than among younger people. More than 75,000 cases of head and neck cancer are diagnosed each year in the United States.

While historically the risk factors for head and neck cancer have involved tobacco and alcohol usage, in recent years this has changed somewhat. The human papilloma virus (HPV), in addition to tobacco and alcohol, is now known to be the cause of a growing number of cancers in certain areas within the head and neck region, even in patients with no history of tobacco usage.

The symptoms of head and neck cancers may include:

  • a lump or a sore that does not heal
  • a sore throat that does not go away
  • difficulty in swallowing
  • changes in or hoarseness of the voice

The diagnosis and treatment of head and neck cancer is complex, and it requires the efforts of a dedicated team with experience in head and neck oncology. Depending upon the situation, treatment may be primarily surgical, radiation, chemotherapy, or any combination of these. Ideally, the decisions regarding treatment will be based upon the input of multiple specialists.

Not all cancer centers have an interest in the treatment of these complex cancers, as they tend to require extensive technology and experience.

Please call (440) 205-5755 to schedule an appointment with one of our specialists.


Fundraising efforts throughout the year help LH/UH Seidman Cancer Center continue to carry out our mission to provide world-class cancer care and oncology services to residents within driving distance of Mentor and Lake County.