The nasopharynx is the area in the upper part of your throat behind your nose. Nasopharyngeal cancer is cancer of the nasopharynx.
Nasopharyngeal cancer is most common in people who live in southern China and southeast Asia or in those whose families came from those areas—it’s rare in other groups
Nasopharyngeal cancer usually causes lumps in your neck
You may also have congestion in your nose, hearing loss or a feeling of fullness or pain in your ears, and blood in your spit or when you blow your nose
Doctors treat nasopharyngeal cancer with radiation therapy, chemotherapy, and sometimes surgery
Doctors don’t know the exact cause of nasopharyngeal cancer. They think the Epstein-Barr virus (the virus that causes mono) plays a role. You’re more likely to get nasopharyngeal cancer if:
If doctors suspect nasopharyngeal cancer, they'll look in your nasopharynx using a special flexible viewing tube. If they see something that might be a cancer, they'll do a biopsy (remove a sample of the tissue for testing).
If you have nasopharyngeal cancer, doctors will do tests to see if your cancer has spread to other parts of your body. Such tests may include:
Nasopharyngeal cancer is more easily treated when caught early.
Doctors treat nasopharyngeal cancer with:
If the cancer comes back after this, doctors may do surgery.
Radiation to your nasopharynx may cause: