Symptoms of salivary gland cancer
The signs or symptoms of salivary gland cancer may vary depending on where the tumour develops and if it has grown into nerves in the face. Non-cancerous salivary gland tumours and other health conditions can cause the same symptoms as salivary gland cancer.
The most common symptom of salivary gland cancer is a painless lump in your jaw, cheek, mouth or neck. Other symptoms of salivary gland cancer include:
- pain in your mouth, ear, jaw, throat or neck that doesn’t go away
- trouble opening your mouth widely (called trismus)
- numbness in part of your face
- drooping or weakness of the muscles on one side of your face
- twitching of muscles on your face
- problems swallowing and drooling
- tearing in one eye
- problems closing an eye
- blood in the saliva
- changes to your voice
I was in total shock when I heard the diagnosis of cancer. Cancer to me was an adult’s disease. Being a 13-year-old teenager, it certainly wasn’t even on my radar.
Great progress has been made
Some cancers, such as thyroid and testicular, have survival rates of over 90%. Other cancers, such as pancreatic, brain and esophageal, continue to have very low survival rates.