Head and neck cancers were the seventh most commonly diagnosed cancer in Australia in 2014. There is a significant gender divide in the incidence rate, with almost three times more men affected than women.
Major risk factors for these cancers include tobacco use, alcohol consumption, and human papillomavirus (HPV) infection, which causes more than half of all oropharyngeal cancers.
Cancer Council Victoria has developed a new campaign – Drink Less, Live More – to reveal the hidden toll of alcohol consumption. Alcohol is linked to more than 3200 cancer cases every year in Australia and approximately 770,000 worldwide. It is known to cause cancers of the mouth, throat (pharynx and larynx) oesophagus, bowel, liver and breast cancer for women postmenopause.