Symptoms of salivary gland cancer | Cancer Research UK
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Symptoms of salivary gland cancer

Men and women discussing salivary gland cancer

This page tells you about the symptoms of salivary gland cancer.

The most common symptom is a lump or swelling on or near your jaw, or in your mouth or neck. Remember this is a rare cancer and a lump in this area doesn’t necessarily mean you have cancer. Around 3 out of 4 tumours of the salivary gland (75%) are not cancer – they are benign.

Other symptoms include

  • Numbness in part of your face
  • Drooping on one side of your face (facial palsy)
  • Pain in the area
  • Problems swallowing
  • Difficulty opening your mouth fully
  • Swelling on one side of your face

Visiting the GP

Remember all these symptoms can be caused by conditions other than cancer. This is a rare disease and it is much more likely that some other problem is causing your symptoms. But if you have any of these symptoms you should have a check up with your doctor. If it is a cancer, the sooner it is diagnosed the better. If it isn’t a cancer, there may well be treatment that will relieve or cure your symptoms.

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Updated: 24 June 2014