Category: Head and Neck Cancer

Head and Neck Reconstruction: Past, Present and Future

Mark W. Kubik, MD

Head and neck reconstruction is the last thing that many people think about when they are told that they have cancer of that region, or have suffered a devastating trauma, such as a gunshot.  But the long-term ramifications of not having this area reconstructed are many, including functional issues, such as swallowing and airway problems, and quality of life issues like reduced socialization and psychological problems. Mark Kubik, MD, Assistant Professor of the Department of Otolaryngology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, is on the forefront of new techniques to offer patients opportunities to regain a part of

Social Determinants of Health

Dr. Jonas Johnson with Patient

Health Literacy Over the past several years, The Eye & Ear Foundation has made strides in its commitment to increase access to health care by working with the Departments of Ophthalmology and Otolaryngology to address social determinants of health. One of the most influential social determinants of health is health literacy. The World Health Organization defines health literacy as “the personal characteristics and social resources needed for individuals and communities to access, understand, appraise and use information and services to make decisions about health” (World Health Organization, 2015). Studies have shown that lower health literacy skills can lead to long-term

Three Years of the Survivorship Clinic: New Programs and New Research

Jonas Johnson, MD and Marci Nilsen, PhD, RN

In 2016, Jonas Johnson, MD, Chairman of the Department of Otolaryngology at the University of Pittsburgh, and Marci Nilsen, PhD, RN, Assistant Professor in the Department of Acute and Tertiary Care in the University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing established the UPMC Survivorship Clinic for Head and Neck Cancer. The clinic’s mission is to address the problem that many Head and Neck Cancer (HNC) patients face of fragmented, uncoordinated care while they are undergoing treatment and after they finish treatment. In the three years that the clinic has been open, it has evolved quite a bit. The team of providers

Attend the 2019 Head and Neck Cancer Survivorship Symposium

UPMC Survivorship Team

On August 5th and 6th 2019, the Department of Otolaryngology hosted the second annual Head and Neck Cancer Survivorship Symposium. This conference was open to healthcare providers and interested community members, and welcomed keynote speakers from around the country speaking on issues related to the treatment of head and neck cancers, and living with symptoms and side effects after treatment. Featured presentations focused on issues such as: Strategies for Maintaining Oral Health Multiple Symptom Management Rehabilitative Strategies Body Image after Cancer Managing Dysphagia (Swallowing) Self-Advocacy in Cancer Care This conference was the first of its kind, bringing together experts from