Cancerous tumours or malignant neoplasms of the nasal cavity and paranasal sinuses are relatively rare. Only 3-4 percent of the malignant cancers of the head and the neck impact the nasal cavities and the paranasal sinuses.
Of all the malignant cancers, these cancers make only 0.5 percent. Added to that, 4 out of 5 people who are affected by this cancer happen to be about 55 years old or more and men are more likely to be affected by this condition than the women.
Though it is rare, it does not mean you do not need to pay heed to it. Quite a number of people who suffer from malignant neoplasms of the nasal cavity and paranasal sinuses can develop cancers and quite a considerable amount of population is diagnosed with cancers every day. These cancerous tumours should not be taken lightly.
Location of Cancer Growth
Most of the paranasal and nasal cavity sinus cancers occur at the maxillary sinus level. Quite rarely, the cancer hits the nasal vestibule that is located at the nose entrance, nasal cavity and the ethmoid sinuses. Less commonly, these cancers affect the sphenoid sinuses.
The nasal canals and sinuses are lined by many different types of cellular structures that include the following.
- Small Salivary Glands and Glandular Cells
- Squamous Cells
- Undifferentiated Cells
- Nerve Cells
- Immune Cells or Lymphocytes
- Muscle Cells
- Bone Cells
Cancer can impact any of these cells which explains why both the paranasal and nasal cancers can have varied cellular makeup or histology.
Blood cancer involving lymphocytes or lymphoma, a type of skin cancer known as melanoma, bone, muscle or skin cancer known as sarcoma and cancer arising from the olfactory nerve or esthesioneuroblastoma can all give rise to paranasal and nasal cancers.
Among the above, nasal and paranasal cancers are mostly caused by the squamous cell cancer. In fact, research reveals that more than 50 percent of these types of cancers are caused by squamous cells.
Adenocarcinoma arising from the glandular cells happens to be the second most common type of nasal cavity.
Symptoms of Nasal Cavity and Paranasal Sinus Cancer
There are many causes that can give rise to symptoms similar to that of paranasal sinus and nasal cavity cancer. But if you notice these, you should immediately consult with your doctor regarding the same. Just take a look on the symptoms.
- Eye Problems
People who have paranasal sinus and nose cancer can experience the following –
- Partial or complete loss of sight
- One eye bulging
- Pain below or above the eye
- Double vision
- Watery eye with tears running down the cheek
- Nose Problems
The nasal and paranasal cancers can cause the following –
- Decreased sense of smell
- Blockages causing stiffness in one side of the nose that does not heal
- Mucus draining in the back of the throat and nose
- Mucus coming from the nose
Nosebleeds are common symptom for those who are diagnosed with cancer of the nose and they usually also experience a blockage.
- Other Symptoms
There are a lot of symptoms that may be included in this case. Some of them are enlisted below.
- Enlarged or swollen lymph nodes in your neck
- A growth or lump anywhere on the nose, face or roof of the mouth that does not heal easily
- Problem in opening the mouth
- Loose teeth
- Pressure or pain in one of your eyes
- Numbness or pain in parts of the face especially the upper cheeks that does not heal
Treatment of Nasal Cavity and Paranasal Sinus Cancer
The severity and the stage of the cancer together with your overall medical condition determine the treatment of nasal cavity and paranasal sinus cancers.
People in the initial stages can be cured with just surgery. In many cases, where the cancer has advanced, the patient may need surgery, chemo along with radiation therapy for curing the cancer.
Lastly, when people have cancers that are incurable, the surgery may be able to slow down the growth of tumour and extend lifetime or in a way palliative care is needed for assisting people suffering from life-threatening ailment.
Here are some of the treatment options for people who are suffering from cancer.
- Palliative care
- Targeted Therapy
- Radiation Therapy
People who are in the advanced stage of the ailment can consult with several types of physicians and specialists including the finest dentist of the best dental clinic, neurosurgeon, ENT, medical and radiation oncologist and so on.
You should not wait if you (or your loved one) are experiencing any or all of the symptoms mentioned above and immediately report it to your doctor so that any problem can be detected and treated before it becomes a life-threatening one and recovering completely becomes a challenge.