Before throat cancer starts to spread to other tissues and parts of the body, it does not show any symptoms. Depending on the extent of spread of the throat cancer there can be some common signs and symptoms of this disease

What Are The Signs Of Throat Cancer?

A Sore Throat And Pain When Swallowing

If you are experiencing a no-stopping throat soreness or pain, it can be a sign of throat cancer. These indications might come along with the feeling that something is trapped inside the throat. Pharyngitis or a sore throat is one of the commonest conditions, and it results from throat viral infection or the lowly known strep throat. (1)

An infectious sore throat basically resolves within a few days, a week or so. When experiencing sore throat that is insistent, it is important to see a doctor for examination. Swallowing problems are one of the common throat cancer symptoms that become severe as the illness grows and spreads.

Hoarseness Of Voice

Changes in voice or throatiness or hoarseness can be a sign of a developing or existing throat cancer, especially cancer of the larynx.  Nevertheless, this symptom doesn’t automatically mean the presence of throat cancer. Laryngitis is a viral infection that infects the voice box and leads to hoarseness or only changes the view.

If the hoarseness or voice change is persistent or progressive, there is the urgent need for medical evaluation to identify the cause. When it comes to laryngitis though, the variation is short-term and resolves when the moment infection dispels. If the hoarseness or voice change is persistent or progressive, there is the urgent need for medical evaluation to identify the cause. (2)

Cough And Difficulty In Breathing

When a cancerous tumor develops in the throat, it can trigger cough reflex and inflame a persistent cough. A persistent cough and breathing difficulties are apparent throat cancer symptoms. Furthermore, some people may experience this distressing sensation that they want to make their throat every time.

Based on the size and location of the tumor, throat tumors can thwart airflow and cause wheezing or breathing difficulty or noisy breathing. Any an unusual cough needs urgent medical evaluation. Lastly, substantial difficulty in breathing also requires necessary care. (3)

Neck Lump

Throat cancers can cause a swelling around the neck region, even though this indication is not present all the time. Passing neck lumps are most often noticed with upper respiratory infections, for instance, strep throat. Neck lumps that happen as a result of upper respiratory infections signify inflamed lymph nodes responding to the infection.

After the infection dies out, lymph nodes get back to their normal size. Furthermore, if the neck lump occurs without any infection or continues long after the infection, it may be an indication of the presence of throat cancer or any other serious illness or body condition. (4)

There could be difficulties in detecting throat cancer symptoms and signs when it’s still in its early stages. Other common signs and symptoms are:

  • Weight loss
  • Wheezing
  • Ear pain


Healthline. (n.d.). Retrieved July 15, 2017, from

Throat cancer symptoms. (n.d.). Retrieved July 15, 2017, from

MAYO CLINIC. (n.d.). Retrieved July 15, 2017, from (n.d.). Retrieved July 15, 2017, from