Pre-Malignant Growths (Dysplasia)

What are they?
Dysplasia is a pathological term describing an abnormal change in the appearance of cells that have NOT turned into cancer, but ARE in the spectrum that can lead to cancer.  In the head and neck, there are a number of changes to the surface of tissues that may show dysplasia.  In the larynx, specifically on the vocal folds, dysplasia is often seen as a white plaque on the surface termed leukoplakia.

 

How are they treated?
Leukoplakia seen in the larynx should be biopsied to rule out dysplasia and cancer.  Biopsy may be possible in the office-based setting for certain patients, but, for others, may be better served in the operating room.  Ultimately, abnormal surface changes are treated with photoangiolytic laser therapy to achieve resolution, which can be done in both operating room and office-based settings depending on patient and disease-specific factors.

Learn more by clicking here, then scrolling down and clicking on the “Laryngeal Dysplasia and Cancer” pamphlet