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Head and Neck Cancer

Diagnosis of Head and Neck Cancers at Wake Forest Baptist

Our team of cancer experts is specially trained to diagnose and treat head and neck cancer tumors. Whether you suspect you have a tumor, or you have a confirmed diagnosis, we are ready to help you take the next step to start an effective treatment plan. A diagnosis most often includes the following steps:


Imaging is a crucial part of head and neck cancer diagnosis and often the first step to help define the extent of the abnormality. If your doctors suspect you have a mass in your head or neck, you will have an imaging test, like an x-ray, MRI or CT scan.


If a mass is found during one of these tests, your doctors may use a scope, a
lighted probe attached to a tiny microscope, to better examine the mass.
The exact diagnostic test will depend on the location of the mass (for instance,
laryngoscopy may be performed if you are suspected to have laryngeal cancer).


A biopsy is usually performed next to acquire tissue from the mass to determine if it is cancerous or benign.


Tissue taken from the biopsy will then be examined under a microscope.
If cancerous cells are detected, your doctors may be able to determine the type and growth pattern of cancer.


Following the results of your biopsy, your head and neck cancer doctors will work with you to design a treatment plan. We have a dedicated team - including specialists from head and neck cancer surgery, radiation oncology, medical oncology, pathology, endoscopic skull base surgery, speech pathology, voice and swallowing, neuroradiology, dentistry, nutrition and patient support – trained to give you the treatments and resources that you need.

Make an Appointment

To schedule an appointment, request an appointment online or call 716-WAKE.

Quick Reference

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Adult Clinic 336-716-4161
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Last Updated: 09-30-2016
Wake Forest Baptist Ranked among Nation’s ‘Best Hospitals’  25 Years in a Row by U.S. News & World ReportComprehensive Cancer Centers National Designation is Renewed2017-2018 Best DoctorsNursing Magnet StatusJoint Commission Report

Disclaimer: The information on this website is for general informational purposes only and SHOULD NOT be relied upon as a substitute for sound professional medical advice, evaluation or care from your physician or other qualified health care provider.

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