Mouth Surgery
Introduction to Surgery
Preparing For Surgery
Quitting Smoking And Drinking
The Day Of Surgery
Procedure For Family During Surgery


There are a number of different operations that can be used to remove nasal and para nasal sinus cancer. The operation used will depend on the size, the type nasal cancer and location of the tumour.

How can I prepare for the surgery?

Your doctor will explain details of the surgery, general risks and side effects of surgery. Ask your doctor if you have questions. They may recommend:

  • stopping blood thinners (e.g. aspirin) before surgery to reduce the risk of bleeding
  • special stockings to reduce the risk of blood clots
  • early mobilisation (i.e not staying in bed) to reduce the risk of blood clots and chest infection
  • antibiotics to lower the risk of wound infection.

If you smoke, it is important that you consider stopping smoking before starting treatment to help reduce the risk of infection and help you recover after your treatment.

Surgical procedures 

The different options for nasal and para nasal sinus cancers include:

Endoscopic surgery 

This is when a telescope and surgical instruments are passed through the nose to get to the nasal cavity, paranasal sinuses, nasopharynx and sometimes into the brain without needing to cut through the skin on the outside.
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craniofacial resection 

This involves removing the cancer using cuts (incisions) via the face and the skull. It is used for cancers that have grown inside, or approach the skull.
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Orbital exenteration

This involves the removal of the eye or eye lid. It is used when the cancer has spread into the eye socket and cannot be treated any other way.
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Neck dissection

This involves removing lymph nodes from the neck. It is used when the cancer has spread to the lymph nodes in the neck, or there is a risk of microscopic cancer in the lymph glands of the neck.
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This may be considered if a large area of tissue is removed. Reconstructive surgery may involve taking tissue from another part of the body called a free flap repair. This operation may be carried out by a surgeon who specialises in reconstructive surgery, your head and neck surgeon or another surgeon.
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A tracheostomy is used to create an opening in the trachea (windpipe) after major head and neck surgery. A tube is inserted into the opening to help you breathe until normal breathing is possible.
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Feeding tubes 

  • A gastrostomy tube (called a PEG tube) goes through the skin and the muscles of your abdominal wall into the stomach. Gastrostomy is recommended if feeding is needed for a medium to longer time (months or years).
  • A nasogastric tube goes through the nose down into the stomach. Nasogastric feeding is used for short time (days or weeks).
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Side effects of surgery

Treatment for nasal and para nasal sinus cancer may lead to a number of side effects. You may not experience all of the side effects. Speak with your doctor if you have any questions or concerns about treatment side effects.