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The Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center

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Hypopharyngeal Cancer

A disease in which cancerous cells are found in the tissues of the hypopharynx—the bottom part of the throat, also called the pharynx. The pharynx is a hollow tube about 5 inches long that starts behind the nose (nasopharynx) and goes down to the neck (hypopharynx) to become part of the esophagus, the tube that goes to the stomach. Air and food pass through the pharynx on the way to the windpipe (trachea) or the esophagus. Cancer of the hypopharynx most commonly starts in the cells that line the hypopharynx.