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Posted on 3/30/2020 by Lanier Valley Dentistry
|Palate cancer is cancer that affects the palate region. It is among the group of cancers otherwise known as oropharynx cancers. Palate cancer can affect any of the regions of the oropharynx, extending to the throat. As such, it is likely to present with non-specific signs and symptoms which may be attributed to other conditions. Prompt diagnosis and care, once detected, go a long way in providing a good diagnosis.
What is Palate Cancer?
Any of the group of cancers that affects the soft and hard palate can be deemed as palate cancer. It is possible that palate cancer may also occur as a secondary malignancy in the presence of an already pre-existing cancer. The typical presentation is with a lump or ulcer that is non-healing and non-responsive to most medications. The most common type of palate cancer is the squamous cell type. This, however, does not rule out the chance of other cancers presenting themselves.
Common Presentations of Palate Cancer
The most common symptom of palate cancer is dysphagia. This is when there is pain and difficulty associated with swallowing food. This is because as the lump progresses, there is continual narrowing of the throat cavity, hence the pain and difficulty.
One other important sign to look for is a lump. The lump may present on any part of the palate. It is not uncommon for the lump to be in the pharynx as well. Take note of whether the lump is getting bigger or smaller as the day's progress. A lump that occasionally bleeds should be of outmost worry and concern.
Pain in the ear is also a non-specific, but important symptom. This is largely because the ear and the palate are attached by nerves that use the same pathway. It is therefore likely that the pain radiating to the ear is from the palate.
Finally, any time you notice your teeth getting loose, or any pain and difficulty extending the jaw, you should consult our dentists as soon as possible.