Cancers of the head and neck can be challenging due to the complex anatomy of this area. After treatment, you may need support to restore and preserve your ability to speak and swallow. Receiving treatment from experts who specialize in diagnosing and treating head and neck cancers is critical. You’ll find those experts at Cleveland Clinic in Florida.

Head and Neck Cancer Care at Cleveland Clinic: Why Choose Us?

Our experts provide exceptional care for all cancers of the head and neck. You’ll benefit from:

  • Personalized experience: Our patient-first focus means we provide excellent, compassionate care to every person who walks through our doors. You’re never just another patient here. We spend time getting to know you and your health goals so we can offer the individualized treatment that’s right for you.
  • Team-based care: Your healthcare providers are a collaborative team representing every medical specialty. Our expert otolaryngologists, head and neck surgeons, radiation oncologists, medical oncologists, cancer geneticists and pathologists all contribute to protecting your health. A dedicated patient navigator guides you through diagnosis and treatment, making sure you have every resource you may need.
  • Advanced treatments: At Cleveland Clinic in Florida, we offer personalized treatment options that fit your life. From therapies focused on curing cancer to strategies that improve quality of life, we work together — and with you — to create a customized plan. Our enhanced imaging protocols mean we find head and neck cancer earlier, when it’s most treatable.
  • Recognized expertise: Our experts lead international organizations dedicated to head and neck cancer care. Cleveland Clinic’s reconstructive surgeons in Florida have trained doctors at facilities throughout the world in microvascular reconstruction surgery that preserves speech and swallowing function. Our radiation oncology program has also received national accreditation from the American College of Radiology. Learn about other awards and recognition our programs have received and why people from across South Florida and the Treasure Coast choose us.
Head and Neck Cancers We Treat

Head and Neck Cancers We Treat

Our head and neck specialists are experts in diagnosing and treating head and neck cancers, even the most complex cases. We treat:

Head and neck specialists at Cleveland Clinic in Florida also provide expert evaluation of thyroid nodules that develop in the neck. When these nodules are cancerous, we treat all types of thyroid cancer with advanced surgical and radiation techniques. Learn more about our thyroid, parathyroid and adrenal gland surgery experts.

Diagnosing Head and Neck Cancer

Diagnosing Head and Neck Cancer

Our head and neck cancer experts prioritize rapid, accurate diagnosis and staging of head and neck cancers so you can start treatment immediately. We collaborate to provide a complete cancer work-up, often during a single day. We begin with a thorough examination and may follow your exam with:

Flexible endoscopy

We use a thin, flexible tube (endoscope) equipped with a light and camera to visualize your nose or throat. Our specialists use endoscopy to check your nasopharynx, mouth and tongue for suspicious tissue that may show cancer. We may also examine your throat with laryngoscopy.

Imaging tests

Our imaging specialists have specialized experience in visualizing the anatomy of the head and neck. They work collaboratively with the head and neck team, using advanced technology to create detailed images. You may have:


Our experts retrieve tissue samples to look for cancer cells and specific genetic changes (mutations) that help us determine the best way to treat you. We may perform:

  • Endoscopic biopsy: Specialists remove tissue samples during endoscopy.
  • Incisional biopsy: Experts use a sharp knife (scalpel) to retrieve a small amount of suspicious tissue.
  • Ultrasound-guided fine needle aspiration (FNA) biopsy: We collect some cells and fluid using needle biopsy.
Head and Neck Cancer Treatment

Head and Neck Cancer Treatment

Once we identify the tumor’s stage, we determine the appropriate treatment options and discuss them with you. Most people with cancer of the oral cavity or tongue will have surgery first. If you have oropharyngeal cancer, you may begin treatment with radiation therapy. Head and neck cancer treatments include:

Minimally invasive surgery

When appropriate, we use minimally invasive surgery to treat head and neck cancer. Our experts are highly trained in using laser surgery and robotic-assisted surgeries to remove cancer. Minimally invasive surgeries help you recover faster, with a shorter hospital stay and fewer side effects.

Radiation therapy

Our radiation oncology specialists use the most precise radiation therapies to treat head and neck cancer. We use a type of intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) called volumetric modulated arc therapy (VMAT) to radiate tumors without damaging nearby tissue. These therapies help maintain your ability to speak and swallow.

Reconstructive surgery

Our head and neck cancer experts specialize in microvascular reconstruction surgery. We use this technique to help preserve your ability to use your mouth and throat after cancer surgery. We take a small amount of skin, bone, muscle or nerves from another part of your body and use it to rebuild your jaw, throat or tongue. Our experts connect blood vessels in the tissue’s new location to make the transplanted tissue functional.

Systemic therapy

Our medical oncologists use powerful drugs that travel through your entire body targeting head and neck tumor cells. You may have these drugs before or after other treatments like radiation and surgery. Therapies we use include:

Our Doctors

Our Doctors

Appointments & Locations Head and Neck Cancer Research

Head and Neck Cancer Research

Our physicians lead clinical trials of new treatments to advance cancer care. Specialists at our Florida Research and Innovation Center also research advancements focused on improving quality of life after cancer treatment. Search for a clinical trial and talk to your doctor to learn if you may be eligible to participate.

Palliative & Supportive Care

Palliative & Supportive Care

You may have concerns about how head and neck cancer treatment could affect your quality of life, especially speech and swallowing. We provide the answers and resources you need in our cancer palliative and supportive care program. Your navigator connects you with cancer nutritionists and experts in speech therapy. We also offer therapies to help you feel better as you recover after treatment.