Diagnosis and treatment of cancer of the larynx

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Published: 29 Jul 2015
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Dr Mohssen Ansarin - European Institute of Oncology, Milan, Italy

Prof Ansarin talks to ecancertv at IAOO 2015 about dealing with the diagnosis and treatment of cancers of the head and neck (nasopharyngeal, oral cavity, pharynx, salivary glands, thyroid gland) and in particular the diagnosis and therapy of cancer of the larynx and hypopharynx with particular reference to the minimally invasive surgical technique laser or robot-assisted, research on predictors of response to therapy and those predictions.

Diagnosis and treatment of cancer of the larynx

Dr Mohssen Ansarin - European Institute of Oncology, Milan, Italy


It’s very important, as you know, our institute is very famous for breast cancer so we learned very important regarding research in breast cancer. So at the moment we are going to study with gene profiling and sequence genes of these head and neck tumours, especially oral cavity cancer, larynx cancer and hypopharynx cancer and thyroid cancer.

What results have your studies given?

Regarding treatment of, for example, larynx cancer, as you know, we treat it with a minimally invasive approach for larynx cancer obviously for early and intermediate stage cancer. In the last about twenty years we treated more than 1,200… about 200 patents with larynx cancer and about more than 80% of these patients underwent conservative surgery which means minimally invasive surgery with laser microsurgery and only 15% of these patients underwent total laryngectomy. The future of head and neck cancer in our institute is minimally invasive treatment. It means not only surgery but also with advanced radiotherapy like important dimensions that avoid side effects in this treatment avoiding the healthy tissues.

What message would you give cancer doctors watching?

It’s fundamental to staging of the cancer, it means we have to know exactly the stage of the lesions and we have to know the possible cure for this patient. It’s very important to staging of these patients nowadays we have more tools for really staging out these head and neck cancers that endoscopies with ... or i-scan for larynx and hypopharynx cancer or CT scan, MRI, spatially MRI nowadays with the spatial for larynx, pharynx we have MRI very, very important to identify the real involvement of the cartilage. It’s very important, the orientation, for modality of treatment.

Are there any other key points you would like to make?

The surgery, I think it’s a very important tool at the moment for head and neck cancer but in the future the cure of the cancer not surgery. We have to… all our efforts should be done for identification of predictive factors how the cancer, head and neck cancer, especially we have to know before the treatment the potentiality of that cancer. It means in order to biology of the cancer we can do or propose a different kind of treatment modality.