Center for Head and Neck Surgery

Center for Head and Neck Surgery

At Greenville ENT, we know that each patient diagnosed with head and neck cancer needs a comprehensive, personalized, and evidence-based treatment plan. No two cases are alike, and we treat each case with the same compassionate, state-of-the-art care.

No matter what, we’re here to walk with our patients on every step of their journey.

A Multidisciplinary Approach

Our head and neck cancer surgeons collaborate with our medical and radiation oncology colleagues on each patient’s case to determine the best treatment plan. Some benefits of our approach include:

  • Clinical trial eligibility evaluations
  • Specialized speech pathologists, nurse navigators, and clinical nutritionists
  • Additional therapy and support to maximize outcomes

Types of Surgeries

Physicians Dr. Davis, Dr. Thomas, Dr. Brown, and Dr. Eller are very experienced in robotic surgery, laser surgery, and the most advanced reconstructive techniques available. Whenever possible, we take a minimally invasive approach to our procedures.

  • Transoral Robotic Surgery

    We can remove some tumors of the tongue, tonsil, and throat using the Davinci Robotic System. Benefits of this include:

    • Minimally invasive procedure
    • Faster healing and return to eating and drinking over traditional techniques
    • Possible reduction or elimination of chemotherapy or radiation
  • Transoral Laser Surgery

    We use this precision surgery to treat some larynx cancers and tumors. Patients work with the Greenville Voice Center to maximize outcomes afterward. Other benefits:

    • No external incisions
    • Faster recovery times
    • Possible elimination of radiation treatment
  • Reconstructive Head and Neck Surgery

    Once a tumor is removed, our top priority is to restore functional ability and cosmetic appearance. Through new advanced facial plastic surgery techniques, we use healthy tissue from hidden areas of the body to help preserve and restore function than was possible with older methods.

  • Minimally Invasive Thyroid/Parathyroid Surgery

    Using advanced techniques, our head and neck specialists can identify and treat these types of disorders. Some patients can even be discharged the day of surgery.

Common Types of Cancers

While we treat a variety of head and neck cancers, some are more common than others:

Oral, Oropharyngeal & Laryngeal Cancers

Oral and oropharyngeal cancers occur in the mouth and throat. Traditional risk factors for these cancers include tobacco use and alcohol abuse. There has been a dramatic increase in the incidence in throat cancer caused by HPV over the last several decades. Larynx cancers affect the voice box. Our head and neck cancer surgeons offer cutting edge treatments, including transoral robotic surgery and transoral laser surgery, to treat these cancers and minimize the side effects of treatment.

Tumors of the Salivary Glands

With salivary gland tumors, early detection is best. Through in-office biopsies, our team can quickly diagnose if salivary gland tumors are malignant. We then determine the right treatment plan and least invasive surgery options.

Thyroid Cancer

Thyroid cancer arises from the thyroid gland and can spread to adjacent lymph nodes in the neck. Surgery is the mainstay of treatment for thyroid cancer. Fortunately, most thyroid cancers have an excellent prognosis. Our surgeons perform the full spectrum of care for thyroid abnormalities- benign and malignant. In most cases, we offer same day ultrasound guided fine needle aspirate biopsy for thyroid nodules to help determine benign versus malignant. Our surgeons employ minimally invasive techniques whenever possible. In some cases, surgery can be performed on an outpatient basis.

Please see this article for more information.

Cancers of the Skin

The sun-exposed skin of the head and neck is the most common site for skin cancer to arise. Surgical removal is often the best treatment. Sometimes we need to biopsy the lymph nodes under the skin to check for spread. This is known as sentinel node biopsy, and it is common in the treatment of melanoma.

General Health and Prevention

HPV Vaccination

You might be surprised to know that HPV, or human papilloma virus, is recognized as the underlying cause of more than 70% of cancers of the tonsils and base of the tongue. The FDA added prevention of oropharyngeal cancer as an indication for the HPV vaccine in June 2020. In keeping with recommendations from the American Head and Neck Society, we encourage HPV vaccination for everyone aged 9-45.

Smoking During Treatment

Our physicians believe that quitting smoking is the single best thing you can do for your health. Quitting will begin to lower your cancer risk the day you put tobacco down for good. Using cigarettes, cigars, or chewing tobacco during treatment for head and neck cancer will reduce survival rates and increase your chance of complications. If you need help quitting, our physicians can assist.

We want to Hear your Voice.

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