Cancer of the larynx

Other Names:
Malignant neoplasm of the laryngeal cartilages
Cancer of the glottis
Cancer of the vocal cords

Laryngeal cancers are mostly squamous-cell carcinomas, reflecting their origin from the epithelium of the larynx.

Cancer can develop in any part of the larynx. The prognosis is affected by the location of the tumour. For the purposes of staging, the larynx is divided into three anatomical regions: the glottis (true vocal cords, anterior and posterior commissures); the supraglottis (epiglottis, arytenoids and aryepiglottic folds, and false cords); and the subglottis.

Most laryngeal cancers originate in the glottis, with supraglottic and subglottic tumours being less frequent.

Laryngeal cancer may spread by: direct extension to adjacent structures, metastasis to regional cervical lymph nodes, or via the blood stream. The most common site of distant metastases is the lung. Laryngeal cancer occurred in 177,000 people in 2018, and resulted in 94,800 deaths (an increase from 76,000 deaths in 1990). Five-year survival rates in the United States are 60.3%.

Related UN Sustainable Development Goals:
GOAL 3: Good Health and Well-being
Problem Type:
G: Very specific problems
Date of last update
04.10.2020 – 22:48 CEST