The larynx is located in the front part of the neck, the lower front of the pharynx and the upper part of the trachea.

It allows air to flow to the respiratory organs for gas exchange. It also produces vocal sounds, also known as the voice box, and prevents food and liquids from entering the respiratory system.

The larynx is composed of the nine cartilages. Three of the cartilages are paired.

Single cartilages

  • Cricoid
  • Epiglottic
  • Thyroid

Paired Cartilages

  • Arytenoid
  • Corniculate
  • Cuneiform

It also composed of two muscles, extrinsic and intrinsic. The extrinsic muscle moves the entire larynx while the intrinsic muscle moves, stretches and relax the cartilages and folds.

Cancer can form on the tissues of the larynx. However, treatments are available.

Please contact your physician if you are experiencing any of these symptoms:

  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Lumps on the throat
  • Hoarseness
  • Bad breath
  • Weight loss
  • Bad cough or chest infection
  • Severe earache
  • Shortness of breath

Although larynx cancer makes up 2-5% of diagnosed cancers, there are several factors than can increase your chance of obtaining the disease.

  • Excessive smoking and drinking
  • Weak immune system
  • Acid reflux
  • Exposure to chemical substances
  • Not enough nutrients