Nasopharyngeal Cancer: Medical Illustrations

Approved by the Cancer.Net Editorial Board, 06/2016

ON THIS PAGE: You will find a basic drawing of the head and neck region, including the location of the nasopharynx. To see other pages, use the menu.

For medical illustrations showing the different stages of nasopharyngeal cancer, please visit the Stages and Grades section.

This illustration show the nasopharynx region in the head and neck, which is the air passageway at the upper part of the throat behind the nose. The nostrils lead into the nasal cavity, which is above the hard palate and the soft palate, which make up the roof of the mouth. The nasal cavity leads into the nasopharynx and down the throat towards the trachea (windpipe) and esophagus. A flap of tissue called the epiglottis helps protect the airway and prevent food from entering the trachea. Copyright 2003 American Society of Clinical Oncology. Robert Morreale/Visual Explanations, LLC.

The next section in this guide is Risk Factors and Prevention, and it explains what factors may increase the chance of developing this disease. Or, use the menu on the side of your screen to choose another section to continue reading this guide.