What is Metastatic Cancer?

Metastatic cancer is cancer that has spread to another place in the body from the place it started. For example if a cancer of the liver were to spread to the lungs the new cancer of the lungs would be metastatic not lung cancer. Almost all cancers can form metastatic tumors.

Squamous Neck with Occult Primary

Refers to a disease in which squamous cancer cells spread to the lymph nodes of the neck and it is not known where the cancer first formed in the body. A doctor will try to find the original tumor but when tests cannot find this primary tumor it is referred to as occult or hidden.

What are the Symptoms of Metastatic Cancer – Squamous neck with Occult Primary?

Signs and symptoms include pain of the neck or throat. A lump may also be present.

What Causes Metastatic Cancer?

Metastatic cancer refers to cancer that has spread to another place in the body from the primary cancerous tumor. In the case of metastatic squamous occult primary cancer of the neck the primary source of the cancer is occult or hidden.

Should I See a Doctor for Metastatic Cancer?

Patients who show signs and symptoms should be examined by a healthcare professional. The early cancer is recognized the more likely treatments will be successful.

Diagnosing Metastatic Cancer

Doctors will run a number of tests to check the body for the original tumor. The organs, respiratory tract, upper digestive tract, and the genitourinary system will all be examined for the primary tumor. Physical exams and biopsies may also be taken of the metastatic neck cancer as well.

Treatment from a Healthcare Professional

Treatments for Metastatic squamous neck cancer with occult primary vary from individual to individual dependent upon a number of factors:

  • The number and size of damaged lymph nodes
  • Whether or not the cancer has responded to treatment or came back
  • The variation between the metastatic and normal cancer cells under a microscope
  • Patient’s age and health
  • Where in the neck cancer is found
  • Whether certain tumor markers are found

Surgery for Metastatic Squamous Neck Cancer with Occult Primary

Radical Neck Dissection- Removes tissues in one or both sides of the neck from the collarbone to the jaw bone. This includes all lymph nodes, the jugular vein, and muscles and nerves important to the face neck and arms.

Modified Radical Neck Dissection- Removing all of the lymph nodes on one or both sides of the neck without removing the muscles of the neck. However the jugular and/or nerves may still be removed.

Partial neck dissection- removes some of the lymph nodes of the neck

Ways to Alleviate Pain From Metastatic Cancer

Most do not experience a great amount of pain as an initial symptom but Acetaminophen (Tylenol) or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs) may be taken to reduce inflammation and pain.

Places to Get Help

Get excellent bone and joint treatment from the top doctors at OrthoArizona – Arizona Orthopaedic Associates.