Oral head and neck cancers are on the rise in younger adults who do not smoke, due to increase in the number of cases of human papilloma virus (HPV), a cancer causing infection that can be transmitted by oral sex.

What are the Potential Warning Signs of Oral Cancers?

  • A sore in your mouth that doesn’t heal or increases in size
  • Persistent pain in your mouth
  • Lumps or white or red patches inside your mouth
  • Difficulty chewing or swallowing or moving your tongue
  • Soreness in your throat or feeling that something is caught in your throat
  • Changes in your voice
  • A lump in your neck

Who Should Get Tested/Vaccinated?

  • It’s recommended that males age 9-21 and females 9-26 be vaccinated.
  • Vaccines are most effective for preteen boys and girls aged 11 or 12 years who have time to develop an immune response before being sexually active.

What is HPV?

About the Author

Dr. Henry N. Ho serves as President of The Ear, Nose, Throat and Plastic Surgery Associates as well as the Medical Director of the Head and Neck Program at the Florida Hospital Cancer Institute. His practice focuses on all phases of otolaryngology as well as head and neck tumors, sleep apnea, robotic and endoscopic sinus surgeries.