How is Laryngeal Cancer Diagnosed?


Your doctor will discuss your medical history and symptoms with you before performing additional tests or procedures to confirm a laryngeal cancer diagnosis. These can include one or more of the following:

  • Physical examination and medical history: Your doctor will examine you and ask you about your symptoms and possible risk factors for cancer.
  • Endoscopy: An endoscope is a flexible tube with a light and camera at its tip. The doctor uses the scope to check for abnormalities.
  • Tissue biopsy: A small tumor tissue sample will be removed to see if it contains cancer cells. The sample may also be examined for HPV.
  • Imaging tests: Exams such as CT, MRI, and PET scanning can help your care team see your tumor's size and location and determine if it has spread.

How is Laryngeal Cancer Treated?


Depending on the stage and location of a laryngeal cancer tumor, your doctor will devise a treatment plan that may include one or more of the following options.


If surgery is part of your treatment, NewYork-Presbyterian's surgeons aim to remove your tumor while leaving as much of your larynx intact as possible. They will also try to maintain your ability to speak. Your surgery depends on the location and extent of growth of your cancer; your surgeon will tell you which is best for you. You may have:

  • Cordectomy. Surgery to remove the vocal cords only
  • Partial laryngectomy. Removal of part of the larynx, which helps maintain your voice
  • Total laryngectomy. Surgery to remove the whole larynx. During this operation, a hole (tracheostomy) is made in the front of your neck to allow you to breathe

Combination therapies

Depending on the stage of your cancer, your doctors may recommend you have radiation therapy with or without chemotherapy. We also give these treatments after surgery to kill any cancer cells remaining in the body.

You can receive finely targeted radiation therapy in our state-of-the-art radiation treatment centers. Novel approaches enable treatment to be targeted to your tumor, sparing as much nearby healthy tissue as possible and reducing your risk of side effects.

We administer chemotherapy in our modern infusion suites. Our experienced oncology nurses monitor your response to therapy during the infusion to ensure you are comfortable and support you during your treatment.

Some people with advanced laryngeal cancer may benefit from immunotherapy, which boosts the power of the immune system to detect and destroy cancer cells. We give the latest immunotherapies in our infusion suites.

Get Care

Trust NewYork-Presbyterian for Laryngeal Cancer Treatment

Your healthcare team includes head and neck cancer surgeons, medical oncologists, and radiation oncologists who collaborate to discuss your care and tailor a plan of treatment that meets your needs and addresses any symptoms you may experience. Speech and swallowing therapists, nutritionists, and dental oncologists are also available to support your health during laryngeal cancer treatment and to help you regain function afterward.

NewYork-Presbyterian participates in clinical studies evaluating innovative treatments for laryngeal cancer. Your doctor will let you know if you may be eligible to participate in a clinical trial.