Ear cancer can begin to propagate from outer region of the skin or may be from the middle or inner ear. Ear Cancer starting from within the ear can damage the inner bone known as the temporal bone. On the other hand, cancer from the outer ear starts with skin cancer and then gets spread across various structures like the ear, canal, and eardrum.
There are various types of cancer that that can cause Ear Cancer namely-
Basal cell carcinoma , squamous cell carcinoma and Melanoma are certain skin cancers that can cause ear cancer.
Basal cell carcinoma affects the outer layer of the skin, while squamous cell carcinoma spreads throughout the outer cartilage of the ear. It is the most common skin cancer, which accounts for sixteen per cent of ear cancer.
Melanoma makes the colour of the skin brown when exposed to the sun. This is dangerous skin cancer but accounts for only one per cent of in-ear cancer cases.
Adenoid cystic carcinoma- This is a rare type of cancer that accounts for 5% of the ear cancer cases
Parotid tumours -This cancer affects the largest salivary glands, which spread to the ear canal.
Schwannoma – This cancer is the tumor growth in the Nerve supplying the inner ear
Symptoms of ear cancer vary according to the part of the ear that is affected.
Outer ear symptoms show scaly patches on the skin, skin ulcers, or pearly white lumps under the skin. The ear canal shows hearing loss or discharge from the ear. The middle ear includes numbness, hearing loss, ear pain, while the inner ear causes dizziness, headache, ear pain.
These symptoms will help in identifying the problem, so never ignore the signs.
Skin cancer-causing ear cancer requires cutting out the area that is affected. While sometimes, the ear canal, eardrum, and bone are removed, but the doctor could reconstruct it if possible.