The head and neck service is composed of a multidisciplinary team of physicians and allied health care professionals who all specialize in the treatment of patients with head and neck cancer. Over 150 new patients with head and neck cancer are diagnosed yearly and one half will eventually undergo surgery at the New York Eye and Ear Infirmary.
Because of the complexity of treating patients with advanced head and neck cancer, a complete laboratory, radiological and endoscopic workup is completed before patients are presented at the tumor board conference. Head and Neck surgeons, radiation therapists, medical oncologists, oral and maxillofacial surgeons, radiologists and pathologists discuss the patient’s staging, treatment, and prognosis.
Input is likewise obtained from nursing staff regarding pre- and post-operative care and social adjustment issues. Speech therapists, prosthodontists, dieticians, and social workers all participate in treatment planning to assure a comprehensive level of specialty care and the greatest possibility of a positive outcome and early discharge from the hospital.