Tonsil cancer is a rare disease that occurs in the head and neck area, mostly in the form of squamous cells. Having cancer is life-altering and can be downright confusing, let alone if you have rare cancer. Active research is still currently undergoing to improve the treatment and tonsil cancer survival rate.
Whether you’re newly diagnosed or have finished tonsil cancer treatment, you may become very aware of your prognosis. If you’re unfamiliar with this term, it refers to the prediction of the outcome of your illness. This article informs you the underlying factors contribute to the survival rate of tonsil cancer.
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Factors Affecting Tonsil Cancer Survival Rate
Physicians research large populations of tonsil cancer patients to figure out the chance of reaching five years after the end of treatment. The first five years become a critical point, and it’s essential to make sure that cancer is not coming back and progressing. However, many factors affect the survival rate.
It’s becoming more common that all head and neck cancers, including tonsil cancer, are HPV-related. Interestingly, patients with HPV-positive tend to better respond to radiation and chemotherapy drugs compared to those who are tested negative.
The survival rate of a patient with HPV reaches the number of 71%. In comparison, the non-HPV tonsil cancer patient is struggling with a 36% survival rate.
While it doesn’t mean that you should change your view on HPV and underestimate it, this finding is now becoming a detrimental factor in tonsil cancer treatment. Latest research tries to discover whether a physician should treat the patient differently according to their HPV status
Similar to much other cancer, tonsil cancer staging affects the outlook of it. Most of the patients in the early stage cope better and confident enough to step into remission. However, those with metastasize to lymph nodes and other organs, may not be responsive enough to treatment and have a worse prognosis.
It’s essential to get rid of any remnant tissues of malignancies in tonsil to prevent further recurrence. Hence, the surgeon may perform their best to do even a radical neck dissection for tonsil cancer.
Improving Your Chance of Getting Into Remission
Despite those, there’s a thing you can do on your own as you’re navigating life as tonsil cancer survivors. Adopting a lifestyle intervention is a must, where you should stay away from tobacco and alcohol. Also, never underestimate the power of nutrition and sleep as they are highly critical in restoring your health.
Due to its rarity, you may find it challenging to get information on tonsil cancer and to meet someone who goes through the same path. However, you can ask physicians for guidelines and join a support group to cope with the effects. With all of the efforts, you may contribute to bettering tonsil cancer survival rates.