Sore throat: could it be a sign of laryngeal cancer? Look!

Research recently published in the British Journal of General Practice has warned physicians and the public to pay attention to symptoms such as daily sore throats accompanied by shortness of breath, earaches and hoarseness.

According to the study, these signs may be an indication of the development of laryngeal cancer , especially in high-risk groups – until then, doctors were usually concerned only with diagnosing patients when they had hoarseness and lumps in the throat.

To reach this conclusion, the study gathered about 800 people with laryngeal cancer to check the status of these patients. In this way, they were able to see similar symptoms of the disease and which were repeated in all cases.

From the result, the researchers noted that patients who had recurrent sore throat were 5% more susceptible to developing laryngeal cancer, and that the likelihood of the disease increases when multiple symptoms appear at the same time.

Hoarseness and altered blood tests, for example, have been observed in some patients by scientists, which represents a 15% chance of being indicative of cancer.

According to the authors of the research, sore throat alone does not mean a manifestation of the disease , as it may have been caused in several ways, but  in conjunction with other symptoms it can be a threat .

How does laryngeal cancer happen?

Laryngeal cancer is characterized by the appearance of malignant tumors in the vocal cords and in the supraglottic larynx (region slightly higher than the vocal cords).

According to the National Cancer Institute (INCA), 7,670 new cases were registered in 2018, with approximately 6,390 of male patients, usually the most affected group.

However, there are so-called risk factors, which are practices or customs that leave people more vulnerable to developing this type of cancer. In this type of disease, for example, it is excessive alcohol consumption and smoking .

These conditions aggravate the situation and increase the chances of the person being affected by the cancer. This is because the substances harmful to health found in these factors pass through the digestive airways and cause injuries in the region.

The first symptom is usually hoarseness that does not go away, then other manifestations may appear, such as difficulties in swallowing, ear pain, shortness of breath and lumps that appear in the throat region over time.

The recent discovery serves as a warning for patients, but it is especially important for health professionals when diagnosing someone with these same clinical conditions.

In addition to enabling an early diagnosis and more effective treatment, research is important for better guidance on one of the types of cancer that has not yet been cured.

It is extremely important to stress that changes in our health should be reasons for us to be concerned and seek medical attention, maintaining a preventive lifestyle.