Central Illinois residents encouraged to get screened for head and neck cancers

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SPRINGFIELD - The Simmons Cancer Institute at Southern Illinois University School of Medicine is encouraging citizens to get screened for head and neck cancer on April 11 and April 18.

Institute officials say they will provide free screenings, by appointment only, from 4:00 p.m. until 6:00 p.m. on both days at 315 West Carpenter Street in Springfield.  Appointments can be made by calling (217) 545-7435 from 8:00 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. on weekdays.

Officials say the cancers that are being screened for are more common in men and people over the age of 50, and that regular check-ups and screenings can find one of these cancers in its early stages, or a condition that could lead to cancer.

Physicians will take a brief patient history and ask questions about potential risk factors, and will screen participants for cancers that affect the ears, nose, mouth, throat, voice box, neck, and thyroid gland.  Individuals who smoke or chew tobacco, consume alcohol regularly, or have a family history of these types of cancers are at a higher risk, and are encouraged to get tested.

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