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Mouth and Throat Tumors: Your Healthcare Team

Your healthcare team will explain your treatment choices. They can answer any questions you have. They’ll work with you during all stages of your treatment. Members of your team may include:

Man talking to healthcare provider in exam room.

  • Primary care provider. This person oversees your health needs.

  • Head and neck surgeon. This healthcare provider does mouth and throat surgery. They may be an otolaryngologist (ENT). This is a doctor who treats ear, nose, and throat diseases. Or you may have a general surgeon. This is a provider trained to do all kinds of surgery.

  • Dentist. This healthcare provider treats tooth and gum diseases. They also treat tooth and gum injuries.

  • Nurses. Nurses take care of you. They also teach you and your family how to care for yourself.

  • Oncologist. This healthcare provider focuses on treating cancer.

  • Anesthesia provider. This person gives medicine to prevent pain during and after surgery.

  • Pathologist. This healthcare provider studies cells and tissues with a microscope. These find diseases this way.

  • Radiation team. These healthcare providers use high-energy X-rays to treat problems.

  • Speech pathologists, occupational therapists, and physical therapists. These people help you regain skills after treatment.

  • Dietitians. These people help plan your diet during and after treatment.

  • Pain management team. These healthcare providers give medicines to ease pain.

  • Plastic/reconstructive team. These healthcare providers do corrective surgery if a large amount of tissue is taken out.

The American Cancer Society advises you to:

  • Take an active part in your care.

  • Ask for extra help when you or your family need it. This includes dealing with the difficult emotional issues that can occur.

  • Keep a list of tests, treatments, and hospital stays you have had. This list will be helpful as team members change.

  • Expect and work to have an attitude of trust, mutual respect, and cooperation.

  • Give accurate health information.

  • Always have another person with you when you talk with a team member. Ask that person to take notes.

  • Make a list of questions before each appointment. Have them answered before you leave.

  • Tell your team members when you are confused or frustrated.

© 2000-2022 The StayWell Company, LLC. All rights reserved. This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your healthcare professional's instructions.
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