Lymphoid tissue helps protect the body against infection. The throat has three types of tonsils: the pharyngeal tonsil (adenoids) in the back of the throat, the palatine tonsils on the sides of the throat, and the lingual tonsils on the base of the tongue. Cancer of the tonsils usually involves the palatine tonsils on the sides of the throat. Most tonsil cancers are squamous cell carcinomas but some are lymphomas.
Survival rates for mouth and oropharyngeal cancers have risen slightly over the last 20 years. For oropharyngeal cancer, around 40 out of every 100 men (40%) and more than 40 out of every 100 women (40%) will survive for 5 years or more after diagnosis. Early-stage tonsil cancer is often treated with radiation therapy. A promising treatment called induction chemotherapy is also used to shrink the tonsil tumor. Advanced cancer cases usually require a combination of surgery, radiation and chemotherapy. New techniques introduced to reduce complications, making Tonsil Cancer a safer operation for more people than ever before.