70-84% of the Hypopharyngeal cancers, present in an advanced stage. Progressive difficulty swallowing, pain during swallowing, neck mass, referred pain in the ear, hoarseness, blood-stained cough and weight loss are few of the symptoms with which patients present. Quite often the symptoms may be so vague, that the time lapse between presentation and diagnosis may be 2 to 4 months.
The prognosis of Hypopharyngeal carcinoma is generally poor because of it’s late presentation. These diseases also show early invasion into surrounding structures due to the lack of supportive tissue and barriers. Rich lymphatic network of this region, explains a high nodal metastases and increased risk of distant metastases. Hypopharyngeal cancers are also associated with synchronous primaries.