Head and Neck Cancer

Note: The information on cancer types on the ACRF website is not designed to provide medical or professional advice and is for information only. If you have any health problems or questions please consult your doctor. All statistics have been sourced from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare.

ACRF & Head and Neck Cancer

To date, ACRF has provided 65 grants totalling $129.3 million to cancer research projects across Australia, investigating all cancers including head and neck cancer. To learn more about these projects click here.

Support cancer research

Head and Neck Cancer Statistics

  • Over 3,800 new head and neck cancers were diagnosed in Australia in 2009.
  • The most commonly diagnosed head and neck cancers are cancers of the lip, tongue and larynx.
  • All three of the above cancers were more common in males than females.
  • For more cancer statistics click here.

Head and Neck Cancer Overview

Head and neck cancer refers to a group of cancers that are biologically similar – starting in the lip, mouth, nasal cavity, sinuses, pharynx and larynx. These head and neck cancers are, in 90% of cases, squamous cell carcinomas, originating from the epithelial tissues which line the cavities and surfaces of these structures and organs.

The onset of head and neck cancers is strongly associated with environmental and behavioural factors, including smoking, alcohol consumption, exposure to UV light, toxic chemicals and viruses such as the human papillomavirus.

Head and neck cancers tend to be aggressive or fast-growing, however they can be cured if detected early, usually through surgery and/or radiotherapy.

Please click on the below for more information about types of head and neck cancers.

Cancers of the oesophagus, the brain, eye, scalp, skin and muscles of the head and neck are not considered ‘head and neck cancers’.

LATEST Cancer Research Updates | ACRF

Brain cancer in Australia

All brain tumours are associated with significant sickness and death, even if they are benign. from Authors Melinda Tea, University of South…

How we can overcome the lack of treatment options for rare cancers

Colman Taylor, University of Sydney and John Zalcberg, Monash University Rare cancers are just that: rare. This means research into each of…

Zero Childhood Cancer national clinical trial launched

Personalised treatment for childhood cancers in Australia is a step closer thanks to the Zero Childhood Cancer program’s national clinical trial launched…

Cancer Research Discoveries | ACRF

New study aims to deliver better outcomes for triple negative breast cancer patients

New research at the Westmead Institute aims to develop a targeted treatment for triple negative breast cancer patients. Triple-negative breast cancer accounts…

Pancreatic cancer patients to benefit from breast cancer drug

A newly approved breast cancer drug could be highly effective against some forms of pancreatic cancer, including metastatic cancer. The study also…

Collaboration leads to search for new cancer treatments

Melbourne researchers have produced the first three-dimensional (3D) map of a molecular ‘scaffold’ called SgK223, known to play a critical role in…