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Salivary Gland Cancer

Salivary gland cancer is a rare form of cancer that originates in the salivary glands. The salivary glands are found in the mouth, neck, and throat, and they aid in digestion. Of the three types of major salivary glands, parotid, sublingual, and submandibular, cancer most frequently occurs in the parotid gland.

Symptoms of salivary gland cancer include pain in the affected area, difficulty swallowing, numbness or muscle weakness in the face, and a lump in the vicinity of the jaw. If salivary cancer is suspected, your doctor will likely perform a physical exam and then order a biopsy and/or imaging of the area. If cancer is found, treatment options include chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery, and your doctor will help you decide which option is right for you.