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Paranasal Sinus and Nasal Cavity Cancer


  • Surgery: Surgery is the treatment of choice in most cases of paranasal sinus and nasal cavity cancer, especially when the cancer is diagnosed at an early stage.
  • Surgery for nasal cavity cancer includes:
  • Wide local excision: Wide local excision involves the removal of the entire tumor along with some of the surrounding healthy tissues.
  • Open medial maxillectomy: If the tumor is present on the lateral wall of the cavity, the oncosurgeon may perform an open medial maxillectomy. It involves cutting the skin along the edges of the nose and removing the nasal cavity by cutting the soft tissues and bones, as required.
  • The surgical interventions for paranasal sinus cancer include open external ethmoidectomy, open maxillectomy, and open craniofacial resection. The surgeons may also perform reconstructive surgery simultaneously or later after completing the paranasal sinus and nasal cavity cancer treatment.
  • Radiation therapy: Radiation therapy involves high-energy particles or rays to kill cancer cells. It is usually combined with surgery or chemotherapy to increase the efficacy of overall treatment. In addition, it significantly reduces the risk of cancer recurrence. Radiation therapy is the treatment in patients with paranasal sinus and nasal cavity cancer who are not healthy enough to undergo surgery.
  • Chemotherapy: Chemotherapy involves drugs to kill cancer cells. Different chemotherapy drugs work during different stages of the cell cycle, and a combination of drugs is usually used to increase treatment efficacy and lower the risk of recurrence. In addition, it may be used with surgery and radiation therapy (chemoradiation therapy).
  • Immunotherapy: Several processes in the cancer cells help them avoid the destructive effects of the immune system cells. This results in the proliferation and spread of cancer cells. Immunotherapy drugs boost the immune system and interfere with these processes, making the cancer cells vulnerable to getting attacked by the immune cells.
  • Targeted therapy: Healthy cells undergo mutations to transform themselves into malignant cells. During mutation, they develop new genetic codes for synthesizing vital chemicals like enzymes and proteins. These substances are essential for dividing, growing, and spreading cancer cells. Targeted therapy either blocks the synthesis of these chemicals or prevents the functioning of these chemicals, resulting in the death of cancer cells.

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