Head and Neck Cancers Multidisciplinary Approach

group of diverse medical professionals sitting at a table

Head and neck cancer care requires a multidisciplinary approach to achieve optimal outcomes. Our patients will typically initially meet with a head and neck oncologic surgeon, nurse-navigator and speech language pathologist trained in evaluation of head and neck cancer. Depending on the needs of individual patient he or she may be evaluated by a nutritionist, dentist, social worker and audiologist. 

Every new head and neck cancer case is discussed in a multidisciplinary Head and Neck Tumor Board where a patient’s recorded clinical exam, images (CAT scans, MRIs, PET scans) and pathology are reviewed by a highly specialized team of head and neck cancer experts, including surgeons, radiation oncologists, medical oncologists and head and neck radiologists and pathologists.  

We believe this approach offers the best outcomes for our patients for many reasons:  

  • Decision making. When multiple specialties examine the patient’s records and discuss the possible treatments directly, they offer the patient the best treatment options. Furthermore, they give the patient a unified recommendation  

  • Convenience. Rather than identifying appropriate experts yourself and making multiple appointments you can be assured that you will have access to all required clinical expertise at one center.  In addition to seeing physician experts in head and neck cancer, you can meet specialists in many of the critically important auxiliary services (such as nutrition, speech therapy, and social work) all in the same location  

  • Coordination of care. Rather than the patient communicating between doctors, the doctors communicate directly with each other and coordinate the sequence and timing of therapy 

If you have head and neck cancer and would like to be seen in our program, please contact: 

Rutgers Cancer Institute:

University Hospital Newark: