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Treatment of recurrent and metastatic nasopharyngeal carcinoma

Edwin P Hui, MD
Anthony TC Chan, MD
Quynh-Thu Le, MD
Section Editors
Bruce E Brockstein, MD
David M Brizel, MD
Marshall R Posner, MD
Marvin P Fried, MD, FACS
Deputy Editor
Michael E Ross, MD


Nasopharyngeal carcinoma arises from the lining of the nasopharynx, the narrow tubular passage behind the nasal cavity. Worldwide, there are 86,000 incident cases and 50,000 deaths annually, but there is remarkable variation in racial and geographic distribution [1]. While rare in most parts of the world, nasopharyngeal carcinoma is endemic in southern China, southeast Asia, north Africa, and the arctic, where undifferentiated, nonkeratinizing squamous cell carcinoma is the predominant histology.

The treatment of residual, recurrent, and metastatic nasopharyngeal cancer is presented here. Related topics include:

(See "Epidemiology, etiology, and diagnosis of nasopharyngeal carcinoma".)

(See "Treatment of early and locoregionally advanced nasopharyngeal carcinoma".)


Nasopharyngeal carcinoma is staged according to the International Union for Cancer Control (UICC) and American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) staging system (table 1) [2].

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Literature review current through: Dec 2017. | This topic last updated: Sep 05, 2017.
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